Christa Hendricks is trying to feed a family of five on $428 a month in food stamps.

“We buy bulk meat, break it down, canned food and at the beginning when we first get our stamps we’re able to get juice, milk, some fruits, some vegetables,” she said. “But when they’re gone, they’re gone.”

And it’s about to get worse.

A federal program that increased food stamp benefits four years ago expires at the end of October.  Some reports indicate it will mean cuts of about $10 a month per person, $29 for a family of three.

“$10 a month is a big pack of meat,” Hendricks said. “It’s probably four meals that I can make out of it.”

At the Centers for Families and Children, Food Centers Director Lou Keim sees at least 400 new families applying for food stamps every six months, just from the west side of Cleveland.

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