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CSUSM Students Partner with County of San Diego to Help Low-Income Families

CSUSM Students Partner with County of San Diego to Help Low-Income FamiliesPresident Haynes joined County supervisors, SDSU President Dr. Weber, County health officials, community service providers, and student volunteers to officially announce the Thrive San Diego partnership at a press conference on February 23.The County of San Diego Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA) continues to enroll more qualified individuals in the food stamp program thanks to a new partnership with California State University San Marcos and San Diego State University. Thrive San Diego is a new initiative through which college students screen low-income families for food stamps and prepare their tax returns at no cost through the Earned Income Tax Credit campaign (EITC).Tax preparation is offered at about 75 sites throughout the county. Of those sites, nine also offer food stamp screening. Two of the locations are completely managed by students."I am delighted to see San Diego State University and California State University San Marcos join the County's efforts to get more people to claim their Earned Income Tax Credit and enroll in the food stamps program," said Supervisor Ron Roberts at a news conference to announce the new partnership.President Karen S. Haynes, Roberts, Supervisor Greg Cox, SDSU President Stephen L. Weber, HHSA Director Nick Macchione, student interns, and volunteers and representatives from other institutions, agencies and organizations participated in the announcement on Tuesday, February 23, of the Thrive San Diego partnership."Thrive San Diego will give families an opportunity to thrive, and not just survive, this tough economy," said Supervisor Greg Cox. "With this initiative, we are providing a one-stop shop for low-income families to receive free tax preparation and food-stamp screening from students to help put nutritious food on their table.""The EITC campaign and Thrive San Diego are two great efforts that benefit low-income families and individuals," said Macchione.  "All of the people and agencies involved in these initiatives care about the well-being of children and families in need."Six student interns from CSUSM participate in the Thrive San Diego campaign, which runs until April 15.  The students have been distributing EITC and food stamp materials at schools, businesses, community centers, churches, and local grocery stores."As a university fully engaged in our community, we are pleased to partner with the County to provide our students with hands-on learning opportunities while simultaneously delivering valuable services to those in need," said CSUSM President Haynes.