COLUMBIA, S.C. — A seasonal government program allowing seniors to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables from local farmers markets is returning to South Carolina on June 1.
The US Department of Agriculture's Senior Farmers' Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP) is meant to supplement the diets of low-income seniors with fresh, nutritious produce while supporting South Carolina farmers.
South Carolina residents age 60 and older may qualify for the program that gives them $50 in the form of five checks ($10 each) to spend at participating local farmer's markets, roadside stands, and community-supported agriculture programs (CSAs). Offered through South Carolina Department of Social Services (DSS), qualified seniors will need to visit a designated location in their area, complete an application, and supply a photo ID card to participate.
The program is available in all 46 South Carolina counties. To find a local distribution center by county, click here.
In Richland County, distribution sites are:
- June 5: Grace United Methodist 410 Harbison Blvd. Columbia from 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
- June 6: Mt. Nebo Baptist Church 8801 Bluff Rd. Eastover from 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
- June 7: Hopkins Wellness Center (Hopkins Park) 150 Hopkins Park Rd. Hopkins from 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
- June 8: Columbia Wellness Center (Cecil Tillis Training Center) 2111 Simpkins Ln. Columbia from 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
- June 9: Blythewood Wellness Center (Killian Park) 1424 Marthan Rd. Blythewood 9 a.m.-1 p.m.
In Lexington County, the distribution site is Brookland-Lakeview Empowerment Center, 1218 Batchelor St., West Columbia from 9 a.m.-2 p.m. every Friday in June.
To qualify, residents must be age 60 and older with a yearly income of $25,142 or less ($33,874 for 2 people), report their household size (jointly or separately), and have a legal form of identification. More details about qualifications and SFMNP, click here.