Skip to main content

Story Collective

Now is your chance to tell your own story about how you use Medicaid to keep you and your family healthy.



Back in the 1990s, Jennifer realized she was in big trouble. She had a lot of health problems, and everything just kept getting worse. She had tried to see a doctor, but no one wanted to give her an appointment because she was uninsured and didn’t have a lot of money. She learned the hard way that health problems don’t wait. Jennifer found herself in the hospital having emergency surgery to have a tumor removed. As the Operating Room staff were transferring her from the OR Table to the gurney post-surgery – they dropped her! Jennifer had now found herself in even bigger trouble, medically speaking. Her health problems began piling up – and she finally realized she needed to apply for Social Security Disability benefits. It took a while, but she was deemed eligible. And that is when her life took a turn for the better. 

With her Social Security Disability benefits approved, Jennifer was automatically signed up for Medicaid*. It was life changing! The day she was made eligible for Medicaid, Jennifer had been experiencing extreme limitations with mobility  for months. She was unable to walk more the 40 feet even with the aid of a cane, and she struggled to care for herself and her home. However, Jennifer’s health improved as she started using doctors and chiropractors to help her recover her health. It hasn’t been an easy road but - with positive thinking, access to good medical care, personal goal setting, and prayers – Jennifer’s life is much better now. Today, she can walk three miles, she easily cares for herself and her home, and she is able to volunteer at the St. James Food Pantry! She is so very grateful Medicaid became available to her; she couldn’t have accomplished all of this without the support of her medical team!  

As Jennifer’s health improved and she realized she had more energy, she contacted St. James Baptist Church to volunteer her time and talents. She wanted to show her gratitude for her improving health by giving back to the community that had supported her in getting well. Jennifer helps box up food for patrons of the food pantry, is the stand-in chef for some of the meals they offer through the church, and even gets to share her artistic talents with her church community. Today she was helping people learn how to tie-dye shirts. She loves art and is very happy she is now well enough to share her joy with others. Jennifer hopes her story can inspire other people who are feeling down on their luck – or just not feeling well. She has learned that being a volunteer is actually helping her to live a healthy life. She has gained friends, gets to move around as she works, and loves that she is now in a position to help other people who need a hand up.  

One of Jennifer’s favorite weekend activities is to attend Fayetteville’s Farmer’s Market. SNAP benefits are doubled for anyone who qualifies for SNAP* – so fresh food is available (and almost affordable) all summer long. She will usually buy extra fresh vegetables, prepare them, and freeze them so she can enjoy delicious vegetables any time of the year. It’s a great way to avoid the extra salts, sugars, and additives that gets put in commercially prepared foods. If you’re ever at the Farmer’s Market or happen to stop by St. James Baptist Church – you should look her up and say hi! 


*In Arkansas, if you are approved for SSA disability benefits, you are automatically eligible for Medicaid. 

*”Double Up Food Bucks” (DUFB) in Arkansas is a dollar-to-dollar matching program where SNAP recipients receive a one-to-one dollar match (up to $20) to purchase locally grown produce at many farmers markets and farm stands across Arkansas. They get two fruits/vegetables for the price of one. 

Thank you to our generous sponsors:

Close Menu