Stay healthy and independent with the Senior Nutrition Program

By Hillary Hatch, Social Security Public Affairs Specialist

Are you eligible for Social Security retirement benefits or already receiving them?  Did you know that you can also receive healthy meals and other nutrition services through the National Senior Nutrition Program?  Local meal programs in communities across the country are waiting to serve you.

As we age, we have different needs, different ways we take care of our health, and different nutrients we need to get from our food.  But we don’t always have enough healthy food or the desire to prepare or eat a meal.  Whether you need more food, healthier food, someone to share a meal with, or just want to learn about good eating habits, a meal program can help.

Every day, senior nutrition programs serve almost one million meals to people age 60 and older.  With home-delivered and group meal options, you can get the food you need in a way that works best for you.  It can help you avoid missed meals – and save you time and money with less shopping and cooking.

Local programs serve up more than food — they offer opportunities to connect and socialize.  We know this improves both your mental and physical health.

The programs can also teach you how to create a healthy eating plan.  You can learn about healthy food recommendations based on your age, unique needs, and preferences.

A senior nutrition program can also connect you with other resources like transportation or homemaker services.  This helps you stay connected and engaged in your community.

It’s no surprise that 9 out of 10 participants say they would recommend a senior nutrition program to a friend.  We know these services help create healthy, strong communities where everyone can thrive at any age.

Find a senior nutrition program in your area and help us spread the word about this program by sharing it with your loved ones, neighbors, and community.  Visit for more information.

The Senior Nutrition Program is administered by the Administration for Community Living, part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.


Hillary Hatch is the Public Affairs Specialist for West Michigan.  You can write her c/o Social Security Administration, 3045 Knapp NE, Grand Rapids MI 49525 or via email at

Did you know?
Nearly 50% of seniors who are eligible for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) are not enrolling and using the program. All over the state tens of thousands of seniors, 60 and older, are shopping at the grocery store with the help of a Michigan Bridge Card. Single seniors receive between $16 and $192 a month in benefits to buy food. Many of them thought that they had too much money to qualify. They thought someone else needed help more than they did.

It only takes two to three minutes to answer eight questions to see if you might qualify for a Michigan Bridge Card. Even if you might not qualify for a Bridge Card, you may be eligible for help paying for Medicare and your Medicare Part D Prescription Drug Benefit. What do you have to lose by calling 877-664-2233? We can be reached Monday through Friday 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.

A little time out of your day might pay off with extra funds each week to buy your medicine, pay the utility bill, or just buy enough food so you don’t have to skip meals next month.

MiCAFE, a program of Elder Law of Michigan can be reached Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. by calling 877-664-2233.