Last Day To Apply For DSNAP In Lee, Collier After Hurricane Irma

Oct 31, 2017

Tuesday was the last day for federal financial food assistance for residents in Lee and Collier Counties who were affected by Hurricane Irma. Thousands of Southwest Floridians have already been processed.

At the overflow parking area of Southwest Florida International Airport, thousands of people from Lee and Collier stand in line to apply for the Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or DSNAP. It's for those who don't already get food assistance, but need help after Irma.

The state is facilitating the federal dollars for people like Sarah Benitez of Bonita Springs. She said she was one of the lucky ones because they only lost a fence, a tree and a garage door to Irma. But she and her husband have two young sons so she said they need this. 

"It's really gonna help a lot. We don't get any kind of food assistance as it is so this is our only option," said Benitez.

Maria Martinez is from Naples. She said she evacuated with her husband to Alabama. When they got back, they had no electricity and all the food went bad in their fridge. She said between her and her husband both losing two weeks of work due to Irma, the cost of gas for the generator and other hurricane expenses, they've gone through about $10,000.

"Estamos todavia recuperandos," said Martinez. 

She said in Spanish they're still recuperating from the loss, and she said this extra cash for food will help them a lot. State officials said that between October 26 and when they close, October 31 at 6 PM, they project about 55,000 households will be processed in Lee and Collier. 

Click here to pre-register for DSNAP