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Friday, August 10, 2012

The Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program

PRESS RELEASE

Potter County Human Services Area Agency on Aging is still distributing Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program checks for Potter County senior citizens. These checks are through the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture. Each senior citizen receives one set of (4) $5 checks per year.

The Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program provides eligible senior citizens with checks to use at approved farmers markets to purchase qualifying fresh fruits and vegetables through November 30, 2012. The checks will be issued through September 30, 2012, at Potter County Senior Centers and the Potter County Human Services AAA.

Select fruits and vegetables approved for purchase must be grown in Pennsylvania or purchased directly from a farmer in a neighboring state. Neighboring states include Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Ohio and West Virginia. Some of the produce that qualifies under the program includes beans, berries, corn, cucumbers, peppers, squash, tomatoes, watermelon, apples, beets, broccoli, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, grapes, onions, potatoes, pumpkins and zucchini. No citrus fruits or tropical fruits are eligible under the Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program. Processed foods, such as jam, honey, cider and baked goods are also ineligible to be purchased through this program.

Potter County senior citizens, age sixty or older, whose income is $20,665 or less for a single person or $27,991 or less for a couple, or $35,317 or less for 3 people or $42,643 or less for four people are eligible for the Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program. Income is based on the total income for 2011. These guidelines are subject to change. The federal guidelines that are in place the day of distribution will be those that are used. Proof of income is not required. However, the senior citizen must sign a register verifying that their income meets the income guidelines. You must show proof of age and address. Driver’s license will work for proof of both. They will be issued four (4), $5.00 checks.

IN ORDER FOR AN INDIVIDUAL TO PICK UP CHECKS FOR ANOTHER INDIVIDUAL, YOU MUST PICK UP A PROXY FORM THAT IS TO BE COMPLETED BY BOTH INDIVIDUALS AND THEN RETURNED TO THE DISTRIBUTION SPOT. THIS IS ALSO THE PROCEDURE FOR HUSBAND/WIFE AND WIFE/HUSBAND. ALL DISTRIBUTION SITES HAVE THESE FORMS AVAILABLE NOW.

Seniors who reside in nursing homes, personal care homes or other residential facilities where meals are provided are not eligible for this program.

Vendors that are approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture for this program display a sign indicating that the Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program checks are accepted. A list of local farmers markets can be obtained at check distribution sites.

According to the Potter County Area Agency on Aging, this is a very beneficial program that will benefit eligible seniors in Potter County by providing fresh, nutritious home grown produce. This program also benefits the farmers who raise these items. It is hoped that seniors will take full advantage of this program.” If you know anyone who is eligible, please have them contact us at the numbers below.

Senior citizens will be able to sign up for the Farmers Market Nutrition Program checks at the following locations:

ULYSSES SENIOR CENTER MON - WED
ULYSSES COMM. BLDG 9 A.M. – 1 P.M
MAIN STREET
ULYSSES, PA 16948
848-9880

OSWAYO VALLEY SENIOR CENTER MON - WED
OSWAYO STREET 9 A.M. – 1 P.M.
SHINGLEHOUSE, PA 16748
697-7178

GALETON SENIOR CENTER WED - FRI
ST. BIBIANA PARISH HALL 9 A.M. – 1 P.M.
111 GERMANIA STREET
GALETON, PA 16922
435-2864

COUDERSPORT SENIOR CENTER WED - FRI
1004 SOUTH MAIN STREET 9 A.M. – 1 P.M.
COUDERSPORT, PA 16915
274-7887

POTTER COUNTY HUMAN SERVICES AAA
62 NORTH ST.
ROULETTE, PA 16746
814-544-7315 or 1-800-800-2560
ASK FOR BARB KIEL – APPT. ONLY

For more information, please contact Barb Kiel, Potter County Area Agency on Aging, at 544-7315 or 1-800-800-2560.