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The Food Stamp Program can do more than just help pay for your monthly food expenses; it can also help you train for a new job. On May 13, 2002, President Bush signed into law, a law that reauthorizes the Food Stamp Employment and Training Program (FSET). The U.S. Department of Agriculture requires each state to operate an employment and training program for Food Stamp recipients. The goal of the Food Stamp Employment and Training Program is to help recipients prepare for and become employed. Services may include an individual assessment of work-related strengths and barriers and an Employment Plan designed to help participants obtain or upgrade the skills necessary to gain employment. Job training may also include General Equivalency Diploma (GED), English as a Second Language (ESL), high school diploma or short-term vocational training. FSET services are administered by each state, usually through service providers such as WorkForce Centers, community action agencies and county employment and training providers. To apply for benefits or obtain information, contact your local Food Stamp program. Check your local phone book in the government pages under Food Stamps. Contact National Headquarters, USDA Food and Nutrition Service, Food Stamp Program, 3101 Park Center Drive, Room 808, Alexandria, VA 22302; 703-305-2026; www.fns.usda.gov/fsp.
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