The Food Stamp Project is a program sponsored and coordinated by Charter Oak Cultural Center and Center City Churches, Inc. The project will take place during March, during Lent and the month leading up to Passover.
The goal of the project is to raise awareness of hunger in Hartford and, as a result, inspire people to give donations to ensure that Center City Churches’ MANNA basic needs program has financial resources, food and supplies to meet the needs of the growing number of hungry people they serve.
Participants in the program will agree to live on a food budget of approximately four dollars/day, the maximum allotment provided on food stamps. The family income of participants will be above the guidelines set for low-income and poverty levels. Candidates will have the option of being part of the project for either one week or the entire month.
The timeline is as follows: the application and guidelines were created during December. Leaders of congregations announced the project and talked with prospective participants in the weeks leading up to Christmas and New Years. Advertising and official dissemination of the application began right after the January 1.
The application deadline is January 31. Interviews will be conducted with prospective participants during the first week of February, with selection and notification being completed by February 15th.
There will be an orientation/opening event on Wednesday, February 28 at Charter Oak Cultural Center. There will be a culminating event on Saturday, March 31st at Charter Oak and participants will be given free tickets to the Hartford Innovative Dance Theatre Ensemble, Scapegoat Garden’s performance that evening.
WFSB-TV Channel 3 has already signed on to cover the story. Families who agree to be included will be filmed for a documentary about the project. Participants will be interviewed before, during and at the conclusion of the experience. There will be a public screening of the documentary in the Fall at Charter Oak Cultural Center.