It is important that all students at Nebraska are ready to learn, so basic food and housing needs are important. Growing evidence suggests that food and housing insecurity compromises the well-being of college students all across the country. Below are some resources available to students experiencing food or housing insecurity. Emergency financial aid may be available to help students experiencing food or housing insecurity. If you are experiencing these issues, you can schedule an appointment with a specialist in the Husker Hub to discuss your situation. You can email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 402-472-2030.
SNAP Benefits for Students (COVID relief)
A recent change in federal law has made more students temporarily eligible for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). SNAP is a federal government program that provides nutrition benefits to qualified families. Under regular SNAP rules, students enrolled in college at least half-time are typically ineligible. However, the recently passed Consolidated Appropriations Act temporarily expands SNAP eligibility to include students who either:
- Are eligible for work-study during the regular academic year, or
- Have an Expected Family Contribution (EFC) of 0 in the current academic year.
This expansion is temporary (expires 30 days after the COVID-19 public health emergency is lifted).To learn more about SNAP benefits in Lincoln/Lancaster county, you can visit the SNAP page through the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). If you are ready to apply, you can do so online through ACCESSNebraska at https://dhhs.ne.gov/pages/accessnebraska.aspx.
If you apply online, a case manager will contact you for a phone interview. You can also apply by calling the appropriate Economic Assistance office listed below:
Nebraska State Economic Assistance: 800-383-4278
Lincoln Economic Assistance: 402-323-3900
Omaha Economic Assistance: 402-595-1258
After your interview, you will be issued an EBT card. If you are approved for SNAP, that card will be loaded with funding once all documentation has been received.
Note: You may be asked to document your eligibility for Federal Work Study and/or $0 EFC status. You can document FWS eligibility by taking a screenshot of your financial aid award screen in MyRED or document your EFC by downloading your Student Aid Report (SAR). Instructions for downloading your SAR can be found at https://studentaid.gov/help-center/answers/article/how-to-get-a-copy-of-sar.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) defines food insecurity as a lack of consistent access to enough food for an active, healthy life. It is important to know that though hunger and food insecurity are closely related, they are distinct concepts. Hunger refers to a personal, physical sensation of discomfort, while food insecurity refers to a lack of available financial resources for food at the household level.
Nebraska offers a Husker Pantry for students experiencing food insecurity. Nearly 1 in 3 students on our campus worries about not having enough food until they get money to buy more. Husker Pantry, located on the 1st floor of the University Health Center (room 123), provides a one-stop location to assist students. By simply presenting their NCard, students can receive food and hygiene items for free. Information about community resources for housing and other food assistance programs also are available.
Visit https://pantry.unl.edu/ for more information including how to use the pantry, pantry hours, how to donate or volunteer, and contact information.
Housing Insecurity and Homelessness
Housing insecurity is the lack of security in an individual shelter that is the result of high housing costs relative to income, poor housing quality, unstable neighborhoods, overcrowding, and/or homelessness.
- Homeless Resources in Nebraska: http://dhhs.ne.gov/Pages/Nebraska-Homeless-Assistance-Program-Recipients.aspx
- People's City Mission: https://pcmlincoln.org/
- Matt Talbot Kitchen & Outreach: https://www.mtko.org/