Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer
Under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act of 2020, families that qualify for free or reduced lunch at school may be eligible for a new benefit of up to $302 per child (PreKindergarten – Grade 12), known as the Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer (P-EBT) program, to help with food costs while students continue to learn at home.
The benefits include:
- $57 for March
- $125 for April
- $120 for May
If you are eligible, the benefit months you are eligible for will be loaded onto an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card. If you received Food Stamp (SNAP) benefits in March, DO NOT apply for these new/additional benefits. The full $302 will automatically be loaded to your existing EBT card. If you need more information on SNAP, visit mydss.mo.gov.
If you did not receive Food Stamp (SNAP) benefits in March, you must apply for this benefit and complete all sections of the application. An individual child is also eligible for the new benefit if the child was attending a school that participates in Community Eligibility Provision (CEP), Provision 2, or Provision 3 during the unanticipated school closure. If you are not sure your child attended an eligible school, you should contact the school district the child attends before you apply. If you do not want to receive this benefit, you do not need to apply. To find out if you may be eligible, please see Attachment A.
Resource Parents qualify to receive P-EBT, as Foster Care children receive free lunch. If you are a Resource Parent who wants to receive these benefits, you will also need to complete the application.
Select one of the following ways to apply:
- Complete the online application at EmergencyMealSurvey.com/MO
- Scan your completed and signed application, then email it to: FoodandNutritionServices@dese.mo.gov
- Mail your completed application to: DESE Food and Nutrition Services 205 Jefferson Street P.O. Box 480 Jefferson City, MO 65102
The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) will verify that your household qualifies to receive free or reduced price meals and will then send your application to the Department of Social Services, Family Support Division (FSD). FSD will send you a letter. If you are approved, you will receive an EBT card with the benefit on it to buy food. Your card will have the one-time benefits loaded on the EBT card to purchase food at any retailer with the QUEST Mark ® logo.
Items you can buy include:
- Fruits and vegetables
- Meat, poultry, and fish
- Dairy products
- Breads and cereals
- Snack foods and non-alcoholic beverages
Seeds and plants that produce food Items you cannot buy are:
- Beer, wine, liquor, cigarettes, or tobacco
- Vitamins, medicines, or supplements
- Live animals (except shellfish or fish)
- Hot foods
- Any nonfood items like pet food, cleaning supplies, paper products, household supplies, hygiene items, or cosmetics.
For more information on the EBT card, visit: mydss.mo.gov/food-assistance/ebt.
If you have questions on how to apply, you can use the online chat feature at mydss.mo.gov or call 855-373-4636. If you need additional assistance with food, childcare, transportation, , and/or other services, visit the Missouri Services Navigator at mo.servicesnavigator.org.