SJI: Your resource for SNAP Employment and Training

Seattle Jobs Initiative is a leading expert on the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Employment & Training (SNAP E&T), which provides employment and training and related supportive services to individuals on SNAP (food stamps). SJI has played an integral role in helping Washington State to develop, grow, advocate for and document its highly-successful SNAP Employment and Training program, Basic Food Employment & Training (BFET).

Since its launch in October 2005, BFET has grown from a small, Seattle-based pilot to a statewide program involving all 34 of Washington’s community and technical colleges and more than 30 community-based organizations, and serving 28,000 individuals annually with a budget of nearly $30 million. A nationally acclaimed program, BFET is a true example of collective impact, with government, nonprofit organizations, community colleges, and philanthropy working together to help those on SNAP get the skills they need for careers that will help them advance to economic self-sufficiency.

SJI has a high level of experience helping states, individual community colleges and community-based organizations develop and operate skills-based SNAP E&T programs. We are currently partnering with the National Skills Coalition to assist states in this endeavor. This multi-faceted work includes training events and direct, one-on-one consulting to states.

SJI is available to provide individual advising and technical assistance to your state agency or organization on building and operating an effective SNAP Employment and Training program.

To learn more, contact our policy director, David Kaz, at or (206) 628-6974.

SNAP E&T/BFET research & tools

    • SNAP E&T Advocates Guide, November 2017
      The Guide is a playbook for advocates that seeks to provide them insight and ideas for their efforts to move States to take steps to develop and expand skills-based Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Employment & Training (SNAP E&T) in their States that effectively helps SNAP participants advance to self-sufficiency. The Guide includes some general advocacy strategies as well as practical information on some of the common roadblocks that may be preventing States from moving forward with building quality SNAP Employment and Training programs. It also includes key messaging on SNAP E&T that may be effective in getting State SNAP agencies to act to expand their programs, and/or in building champions for SNAP E&T who can move States to act.

    • SNAP E&T: Opportunities for Alignment with WIOA, September 2016
      The brief presents an examination of the initial impact, if any, on States SNAP E&T programs of the passage of WIOA and the opportunity it afforded States to develop new plans for their public workforce systems that align programs such as SNAP E&T with WIOA-supported core programs. It reviews State workforce plans that include SNAP E&T as a partner program. It also presents as a case study the approach of Tennessee, a State that has taken important steps to better align its growing SNAP E&T program with WIOA, both at a strategic and an operational level. Finally, the brief discusses the policies relevant to the alignment of WIOA and SNAP E&T as well as suggestions for integrating these programs in a way that is beneficial to the expansion of job-driven SNAP E&T programs.
    • Building Skills through SNAP Employment and Training: Recommendations from Lessons Learned in Four States, April 2016
      The brief outlines recommendations learned from SJI and NSC’s work in 2015 with Iowa, Connecticut, Maryland, and Oregon, as well as identifies common challenges in developing skills-based SNAP E&T programs and how state agencies can address them.

SNAP E&T/BFET resource archive

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