Pandemic EBT Alert & Updates

Published on Jul 25, 2023 in Child Nutrition, School-Aged Children, Young Children

P-EBT Alert & Updates 

You Might Qualify for More P-EBT Benefits!

The Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer (P-EBT) is a federal program that helps children affected by school closures during the pandemic to get the food they need. If your child is eligible for free or reduced-price meals at school or childcare, they could receive P-EBT benefits to buy groceries.

Using the P-EBT program is safe! You don’t have to worry about paying back any benefits, and it won’t affect your immigration status, benefits, or income.


P-EBT 2.0 Reissuance Alert!

P-EBT 2.0 helped almost 4 million eligible school-age children and close to 800,000 young children. 

However, according to the P-EBT 2.0 report, more than 500,000 P-EBT 2.0 benefit cards were not activated. Unfortunately, after a year of no activity, the benefits were removed. This means many families in California didn’t get P-EBT benefits their child was eligible for. 

The good news is that these 500,000 families can now get a new card with up to $1200 per child to buy food.

The California Department of Social Services (CDSS) received federal approval to give out new cards to those families. CDSS sent a postcard to eligible children with instructions on how to request a new card.

If you did not receive or used your P-EBT 2.0 card in 2022, your child might be able to get a new card with up to $1200 per child for buying food. Families have until August 18, 2023 to apply. 


Your child might be eligible for a  P-EBT 2.0 card if:

  • You did NOT activate your child’s first P-EBT 2.0 card, 
  • You did NOT spend ANY benefits before your P-EBT 2.0 card expired,  
  • You received a postcard between June 28th and July 1st in the mail indicating that your child is eligible. 

Eligible children will NOT automatically get the P-EBT 2.0 reissuance card

Families need to call the P-EBT 2.0 helpline at 1-800-887-8230 (6am – 8pm Monday to Friday) before August 18, 2023 to receive the card. 

Please provide the following information when you call:

  • First and last name of your child 
  • Date of birth of your child
  • The school name your child attended during the 2020-2021 school year, and
  • The address where your child lived during the 2020-2021 school year.

For more information visit the website and use the Live Chat Assistance at


Who is eligible for P-EBT 2.0?

    • Children who qualified for free or reduced-priced meals during the school year 2020-2021 and attended a K-12 school that used hybrid or full distance learning. Also, children younger than 6 years old who received Calfresh. 
    • Your child can qualify based on filling out the Free and Reduced Meal form at school, your family’s income, or if your child receives CalFresh or Medical, is a foster child, migrant, or experiencing homelessness.
    • P-EBT 2.0 cards went out in 2022 and benefits cover the school year 2020-2021

P-EBT 3.0 Cards Have Been Sent

You don’t need to apply for P-EBT 3.0. If you think your child qualifies and you haven’t received the card, please contact the P-EBT Helpline at (877) 328-9677 or visit California’s official P-EBT website. Make sure to activate the card and use the benefits before they expire!

P-EBT 4.0 Cards Will Be Sent in August to all eligible families

    • Families do not need to apply
    • To find out if your child is eligible or to get more information, visit the P-EBT website




Was this resource helpful?

Please consider supporting Nourish California's work.

Your 100% tax-deductible donation is an investment in our research and supports our mission to give California’s critically under-resourced communities the nutrition they desperately need.