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Unlock $25 Extra EBT Benefits in Rhode Island: Your Guide to the Eat Well Be Well Program

Unlock $25 Extra EBT Benefits in Rhode Island: Your Guide to the Eat Well Be Well Program

The Eat Well Be Well Program can give you $25 in extra EBT benefits when you buy certain items from participating retailers in Rhode Island! This exciting new program is helping low income families eat healthier on a budget.

This comprehensive guide to the Eat Well Be Well Program includes everything you need to know about who is eligible and how to get that extra grocery money. Let’s dive right in!

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About the Eat Well Be Well Program

The Eat Well Be Well (EWBW) Program is a big deal in Rhode Island. It’s all about making healthy food more affordable. Here’s what you need to know.

What is the EWBW Program?

The Eat Well Be Well Program is a nutrition incentive. That means it’s designed to reward low income shoppers for making healthy choices at the store.

If you use your Rhode Island EBT card to buy fresh fruits and vegetables at a participating store, you’ll get 50 cents back on every $1 you spend. You can earn up to $25 in rewards through this program!

Who Qualifies for Extra EBT?

Anyone who receives SNAP benefits in Rhode Island is automatically enrolled in this program. If you’ve got food stamps, you can use the Eat Well Be Well Program right away as long as you shop at a participating retailer.

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How to Get Extra EBT from EWBW

Getting your hands on the extra $25 EBT benefits is easy. Let’s walk through how to do it.

Shop at a Participating Store

You will only be able to receive the extra EBT benefits if you shop at a participating store in Rhode Island. Even if you buy eligible items, you won’t get the money back unless you’re at a store that is registered with the Eat Well Be Well program.

The good news is that it’s easy to find stores that are participating! As of this publication, you can get those EWBW reimbursements when you shop at any Stop & Shop or Walmart store in Rhode Island.

You can check for an updated list of locations on the Rhode Island Eat Well Be Well website.

Buy Eligible Products

The Eat Well Be Well Program provides a 50 cent reimbursement for every $1 you spend on eligible products.

Eligible products include:

  • Fresh Produce
    • Fresh fruits and vegetables (cut or whole)
    • Salad Kits (including cheese, croutons, dressing, etc.)
    • Fresh garlic
    • Pomegranate cup (fresh arils)
  • Seeds and Herbs
    • Edible seeds (e.g., sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds)
    • Fresh herbs
    • Potted fruit, vegetable, and herb plants (e.g., basil)

When in doubt, look for helpful signs that help you determine what is approved. The state’s instructions encourage stores to identify which products are eligible for reimbursement.

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Get Reimbursed Automatically

After your purchase, the reimbursement will be immediately put back on your EBT card for reuse. It’s basically treated like extra EBT money, so you can buy any EBT-eligible item from any store that can process those benefits.

You can always check your rewards balance as well. It’s just like checking your normal EBT balance. It will be printed on your receipt when you check out. You can also call or use the online portal to check your balance, too.

Tips for Maximizing Your EWBW Benefits

Want to make the most out of the extra $25 EBT benefits? Here’s how it works. To get the full $25, you’ll need to spend at least $50 on eligible items. The best part? This bonus goes straight to your EBT card, ready to use again.

Let’s break it down with an example. Imagine you have just $25 in EBT benefits. You decide to use all of it on eligible items. You’ll get back $12.50. If you use that $12.50 again on eligible items, you’ll receive another $6.25 in benefits. Spend that, and you’ll get back about $3.12. Add it all up, and you’ve got almost $23 back in reimbursements. It’s like doubling the value of your original SNAP benefits!

This cycle means your benefits can go further, helping you and your family enjoy more healthy foods without stretching your budget too thin.

Use Smart Shopping Strategies

Of course, one of the concerns with buying fresh produce is that these products spoil faster than more shelf-stable items. Here are some tips to help you make good decisions at the store:

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  • Look for Freshness: Choose fruits and vegetables with vibrant colors and firm textures. Avoid items with bruises or soft spots.
  • Check the Season: Buy in-season produce. It’s fresher, tastes better, and is often cheaper.
  • Bulk Buys: Sometimes, buying in bulk can save money. Just make sure you have a plan to use all of it before it goes bad.

In fact, seasonal produce tends to be much more affordable than out-of-season produce. Here’s a quick seasonal guide to help:

  • Spring and Summer: Look for berries, peaches, cucumbers, and tomatoes. They’re at their peak and often on sale.
  • Fall and Winter: Squashes, apples, and root vegetables like carrots and potatoes are great choices. They’re hearty and perfect for warming meals.

Plan Meals Around Produce

If you plan your meals in advance, you can spend your EBT benefits more effectively.

  • Meal Prep: Plan your meals for the week around the fruits and vegetables you buy. This way, you use everything you purchase.
  • Mix and Match: Use versatile ingredients in multiple meals. For example, spinach can be a salad base or added to omelets and smoothies.

Preserve Your Own Produce

If you end up buying more than you can use in a reasonable amount of time, you may be able to preserve the excess through smart storage methods.

  • Freezing: Freeze fruits and veggies that are about to go bad. They’re great for smoothies or cooked dishes later.
  • Storing Properly: Store produce correctly to extend its life. For example, keep potatoes in a cool, dark place and berries in the fridge.
  • Canning and Pickling: Preserve your produce through canning or pickling. It’s a fun way to keep enjoying seasonal flavors all year round.

Other Helpful Resources

In navigating the path to financial stability and well-being, it’s crucial to know about the various resources available to support individuals and families living on a low income. Beyond specific programs like Eat Well Be Well, a range of other assistance options can provide substantial relief and support. Here’s a closer look at some of these valuable resources.

Amazon EBT Discount

Amazon offers an EBT discount program designed to make shopping more affordable for households receiving government assistance. With this discount, eligible participants can access Amazon Prime at a reduced rate, unlocking benefits like free shipping, exclusive deals, and access to a wide array of groceries and essentials at lower prices.

This initiative not only makes essential goods more accessible but also supports individuals in stretching their budgets further, ensuring they have access to nutritious food and other necessities without compromising on quality or convenience.

Sign up for Amazon Access today!

1,000+ EBT Discounts

Across the country, there are over a thousand discounts and special offers available to EBT cardholders, ranging from reduced admission to museums and zoos to discounts on utilities and public transportation.

These benefits are designed to enrich the lives of low-income families, providing opportunities for education, recreation, and essential services at a fraction of the cost. By taking advantage of these discounts, families can enjoy a higher quality of life and access a variety of services and experiences that might otherwise be out of reach.

Get the full list of EBT discounts!

Other Government Assistance Programs

If you receive SNAP benefits in Rhode Island, there are other government assistance programs you may qualify for. These include:

FAQs about Eat Well Be Well

This new program has raised a lot of questions from our readers! Here are some common questions and their answers.

How do I know if I’m eligible for the extra $25 EBT benefits?

You’re eligible if you’re currently receiving SNAP benefits in Rhode Island. There’s no separate application for the Eat Well Be Well (EWBW) Program; if you qualify for SNAP, you automatically qualify for the extra benefits when you buy eligible fruits and vegetables.

What can I buy with the extra EBT benefits?

You can use the extra $25 EBT benefits to buy fresh, frozen, or canned fruits and vegetables without added sugars, fats, or oils. Eligible items include whole or cut fruits and vegetables, salad kits that contain no added sweeteners, and edible seeds and herbs. Potted fruit, vegetable, and herb plants are also eligible.

Can I use the extra benefits at any store?

The extra $25 EBT benefits can be used at all participating retailers in Rhode Island that accept EBT. This includes all Stop & Shop and Walmart locations across the state, as well as local farmers markets that participate in the SNAP program. Always check for a sign at your local store or ask a store employee to make sure they participate in the EWBW Program.

How many times can I use this program?

You can receive up to $25 in extra EBT benefits each month through this program. If you max out your benefits in one month, remember to do it again next month!

How long will the Eat Well Be Well program last?

The Eat Well Be Well Program is a pilot program, which means it is intended to be temporary while they study the impact. The EWBW Program was funded with $11.5 million and will continue until those funds are spent. If more funding becomes available, the program may continue longer than expected.

Relief Recap

Rhode Island’s new Eat Well Be Well program is helping low income families purchase healthier food by providing up to $25 in extra EBT benefits each month! If you purchase healthy food from participating stores, you can get reimbursed right back onto your EBT card. Try it today!