Tyler (KYTX) -- You hear about drastic cuts to federal assistance programs, but don't' always see the effects. Earlier this month, lawmakers passed what's known as the Farm Bill. It slashed 800 million dollars a year from the food stamp budget.
When Dewayne Parker heard about these cuts he was petrified."I thought I was going to starve to death," Parker said.
He says change started about a year ago.
"They lowered everyone to $189 or around there that were getting $200," Parker said.
Because he gets social security benefits, he's now only afforded $31 a month in food stamps. After all bills are paid, his budget is a mere $370 a month. That's all he has to live on.
"Milk and bread, that's about it," Parker said.
He depends on the food pantry at St. Paul Children's Foundation where staff help people like him apply for assistance.
"A lot of people find them daunting. There's a lot to fill out and people who have a lower literacy skill may have trouble filling it out. And that's why I'm here," Jackie Erlandson, with St. Paul's, said.
She adds that they also take into consideration if you get money from another source. St. Paul's is also starting a gardening initiative so people can learn how to eat healthier. It's a priority that falls by the wayside.
"Have you been to the supermarket lately? Vegetables are outrageous," Parker said.
He's just happy with one meal a day.