SIS and One Degree Partner to Help Connect California Families to Health Care and Food
Collaboration for Good: SIS and One Degree Jointly Create Medi-Cal and CalFresh Eligibility Screener for Comprehensive Referral Platform
Social Interest Solutions (SIS) is proud to partner with One Degree to create a new, streamlined path between Californians and the critical services they need. Through a new pilot, launched October 30th, more than 18,000 low-income families using One Degree each month will have access to a Medi-Cal and CalFresh eligibility-assessment tool, which integrates SIS’s quick and precise screening technology into One Degree’s comprehensive platform. In less than three minutes, anyone with access to a computer, tablet or smart phone can determine whether they are likely to be eligible for California’s health insurance and food assistance programs.
This open and unique collaboration combines the resources and expertise of each organization to have an exponential impact for California families. One Degree is a public direct-to-consumer platform, available at 1degree.org and on iOS and Android, that connects vulnerable families to critical social services and streamlines access. SIS develops thoughtful technology solutions for health and human services, helping program administrators and assisters better enroll and serve working people and families in need.
By empowering people to conveniently and anonymously check eligibility on their own time, SIS and One Degree aim to close the gap between information and enrollment, and encourage families to apply for the services they need.
California Families Are Falling Through the Cracks
About 2 million Californians who qualify for food assistance through CalFresh are not receiving the benefits, leaving California as one of the lowest ranking states in participation levels. Over 300,000 people are also eligible but not enrolled in Medi-Cal. While there are several contributing factors, the current outdated and time-consuming application process too often acts as a barrier for eligible families. Without the ability to know if they are eligible, the long lines, distant locations and limited office hours can seem even more daunting.
Empowering people with quick and easy eligibility-screening tools also reduces the burden on program assisters and administrators, freeing up time for them to directly support individuals and families who are ready to begin the application process.
A True Partnership
The pilot program is part of SIS’s longer-term commitment to open innovation in building thoughtful partnerships across the social technology sector.
“One Degree is a platform that connects thousands of Californians with information about the many services individuals and families need to live healthy, full lives. We share an ambitious vision to create solutions for people who need help and support. Our core missions and potential to have a positive impact on people’s well-being inspire us to use our strengths to build something bigger. Together, we’re able to take a long step toward connecting them to that support,” said Robert Phillips, CEO of Social Interest Solutions.
“This collaboration with SIS shows what’s possible when we share a common goal to empower families and streamline the safety net,” said Rey Faustino, One Degree’s CEO. “SIS has decades of experience understanding policy nuances and other realities of government programs. Paired with our modern platform, we’re demonstrating what’s possible when we put the needs of vulnerable families at the forefront. This is how we will build the 21st century safety net.”
The collaboration will also include continuous data analysis, ongoing user-testing, and potentially, an impact report at the end of the pilot.
“We see this partnership as promising for the social technology sector,” said Phillips. “When organizations with shared missions combine their strengths, we can create elegant, thoughtful technology connecting people to critical services and support and directly impacting their lives.”
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Chief Communications Officer
Social Interest Solutions
Social Interest Solutions is a non-profit on a mission: to eliminate the barriers that separate people from the services and support that matter most. We create solutions by fusing our expertise in policy and technology, designing beyond the limitations of both, and making sure we put people first. We work with federal, state, and local agencies, service providers, community organizations, and researchers to better connect millions of Americans to health care, nutrition, and other programs.
About One Degree
One Degree’s mission is to empower people to create a path out of poverty for themselves and for their communities. One Degree is a nonprofit technology-driven organization that is revolutionizing the way low-income families – and the people who help them – access community resources to break the cycle of poverty. We believe accessing food pantries, crisis hotlines, job training, homeless services, health clinics or any helpful resource should be as simple as ordering a book on Amazon.