Others may participate, but must pay the full cost of the meal.
Congregate Meals Program
Montana has about 170 congregate meal sites around the state. The majority of these sites are senior centers, but churches, fraternal organizations, nursing homes, and restaurants also serve as meal sites. Meals must comply with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Each site determines the frequency of meals served per week. Over 1,000,000 congregate meals are served annually to over 25,000 people. For more information, contact your local Area Agency on Aging at 1-800-551-3191.
Home Delivered Meals
Home delivered meals are targeted to those seniors who are unable to get to meal sites for a congregate meal. The vast majority of home delivered meals are served hot, but they can be delivered cold, frozen, dried, canned, or as supplemental foods. Meals must comply with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Each site determines the frequency of meals served per week. Over 600,000 home delivered meals are served annually to about 6,500 people. For more information, contact your local Area Agency on Aging at 1-800-551-3191.
Nutrition Education Programs
Aging meal sites provide nutrition education that promotes better health by providing accurate and culturally sensitive nutrition, physical fitness, or health (as it relates to nutrition) information and instruction to participants. For more information, contact your local Area Agency on Aging at 1-800-551-3191.
Community Supplemental Food Program (CSFP)
This USDA program provides food to seniors 60 years of age and over and WIC families with children age 5 to 6 years old. It provides a box of 30 pounds of food per month. Seniors must meet income requirements - 130% of federal poverty level eligibility guidelines (2017) – $1,306 for one or $1,759 for a couple. Currently there are about 7,000 people being served under this program, the vast majority of them are seniors. Services are delivered through a variety of organizations, including senior centers and food banks. For more information, contact: your local Area Agency on Aging at 1-800-551-3191
Senior Farmers Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP).
This USDA program serves seniors 60 years of age and over. Seniors must meet income requirements - 185% of federal poverty level (2017) $1,860 for one person or $2,504 for a couple. Currently, about 2,400 people are being served. Clients receive coupons to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables that are grown in Montana. Applications become available in mid-May or early June of each year and can only be redeemed at the participating summer farmers’ markets.
There are currently 10 markets that are participating in the program: Bozeman, Helena, Hamilton, Havre, Darby, Stevensville, Polson, Livingston, Manhattan, Miles City, and Missoula. Billings has a bulk distribution program operated through the Billings Food Bank. Local coalitions, which include senior centers, County Councils, Area Agencies on Aging, food banks and market masters, operate the programs in the participating areas. Seniors interested in applying for the SFMNP program coupons are encouraged to contact the Local Agencies in their area. SFMNP Local Agencies
Farmers interested in accepting senior coupons during the Farmers’ Markets in the participating areas are required to take part in a brief training. For more information on this program and Farmer training, contact Jackie Stoeckel at the State Office on Aging at 1-800-332-2272 during normal business hours.
The Aging Services Bureau contracts with Minkie Medora, a Registered Dietitian from Missoula, to offer consultations regarding nutrition issues relating to senior citizens, food safety issues at senior meal sites and other related health issues with any of the above listed providers.
For more information, contact:
Jackie Stoeckel, State Office on Aging Jstoeckel@mt.gov or at 1-800-332-2272 during normal business hours.
For Area Agencies and SFMNP Local Sites Only: