IHC's Hunger Hotline
The Illinois Hunger Coalition provides assistance in English and Spanish to low-income households through its statewide toll-free Hunger Hotline. Callers are assisted in applying for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), All Kids, Medicaid, Medicare, and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF). IHC also offers referrals for the Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), Low Income Housing Energy Assistance programs (LIHEAP), food pantries and soup kitchens, child care, housing assistance, senior nutrition and health programs, and other federal nutrition programs (SFSP, CACFP, Meals on Wheels, and At-Risk Afterschool Snacks and Suppers). Case management services are provided to callers inappropriately denied services from the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS).
Callers are educated about their eligibility, rights and responsibilities, and assisted through the application and maintenance process. Callers are also educated about other income support programs and summer food sites, and referred to other organizations for additional services. As a result of individual and systemic problems identified through calls to the Hunger Hotline, IHC advocates with local and state administrators at IDHS-Health Care and Family Services (HFS) offices to identify, address, and address barriers to access to nutrition and health programs. These concerns are also address through the Community Quality Councils convened by IHC.