CalFresh Outreach Program Overview


SNAP/Food Stamps/CalFresh was established in its modern form by the Food Stamp Reform Act of 1977. Its purpose was to act as a safety net against hunger for Americans with low incomes. In the latter half of the 1980s, the program was expanded due to severe domestic hunger. Outreach, however, became an optional activity for the states with the passage of the Hunger Prevention Act of 1988 and the Mickey Leland Memorial Domestic Hunger Relief Act in 1990. In 2003, CDSS and CDPH collaborated with the California Association of Food Banks (CAFB) to develop the first California Food Stamp Access Improvement Plan. The plan has been updated annually and, as of January 1, 2013, is overseen by the CDSS.


Increase the number of eligible households participating in CalFresh
Educate people with low incomes and other stakeholders about CalFresh


CalFresh Outreach is a public/private partnership. The Prime Contractors, and their community-based organization subcontractors, contribute outreach funds from non-federal, non-federally matched sources. These funds are referred to as State Share. For all of the outreach efforts included in the CalFresh Outreach Plan, USDA reimburses 50 percent for allowable administrative program costs that are reasonable and necessary to operate approved activities.

CDSS retains a percentage of the reimbursement to administer the CalFresh Outreach Plan, maintain the statewide hotline, and develop materials, training, and outreach program enhancements. Prime Contractors receive a percentage of the reimbursement to manage their subcontractors. Subcontractors receive the remaining reimbursement to support CalFresh Outreach.

The CDSS Outreach Team

The CalFresh Outreach team is dedicated to helping the Prime Contractors, and their community-based organization subcontractors in meeting their goals and fulfilling the mission.

Meet the CDSS CalFresh Outreach team!