Discover Basic Needs Navigation Guide
Students’ basic needs include access to nutritious and sufficient food; safe, secure, and adequate housing – to sleep, to study, to cook, and to shower; healthcare to promote sustained mental and physical wellbeing; affordable technology and transportation; resources for personal hygiene; and childcare and related needs.
Food insecurity is being without reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable and nutritious food; this can be due to lack of money and/or access to resources. SMC offers food resources on campus and off campus!
Bodega (Food Pantry)
SMC's First Centralized Food Pantry! Any currently enrolled student is welcome to come by to receive non-perishable food items, fresh produce, and toiletries. Open 5 days a week! For more information about Bodega and instructions on how to access this great resource, please visit: Food Security Programs
Meal Project 2.0 @ SMC
SMC Foundation’s Meal Project provides currently enrolled Santa Monica College students who are experiencing food insecurity with meal support. The goal is to help students stay in school so that they can accomplish their educational aspirations without experiencing severe hunger. Due to our limited resources, moving forward, Meal Project eligibility will be determined on a case-by-case basis with an emphasis on serving students who are most in need of food assistance. We encourage only those who are experiencing food insecurity to sign up for Meal Project 2.0.
Students who are eligible to participate in Meal Project no longer have to choose between Everytable and Bento programs. Students can now pick-up 5 Everytable meals per week from Bodega during it's operating hours. Additionally, students enrolled in Meal Project 2.0 will automatically be enrolled in Bento, a text-based meal program for on the go. With Bento students can text a number when they are hungry and a list of restaurants in their area, where they can get a free meal will pop up. Program benefits will vary depending on the amount of units you are currently taking (must be enrolled in a minimum of 5 credits for Fall/Spring and 3 credits for Winter/Summer).
CalFresh is California’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) that provides individuals and families with money to buy food and groceries. You may be eligible for up to $280 per month in CalFresh benefits. Students and non-students can apply online at http://www.getcalfresh.org/. Students can also email Foodsecurity@smc.edu for additional assistance.
Housing insecurity refers to challenges in:
- Cost of housing
- Couch Surfing (periodically staying with friends)
- Inability to pay rent and/or utilities
- Poor housing quality
- Overcrowded and/or unstable neighborhoods
- Unsafe home environment or need to escape an unsafe housing situation
Safe, comfortable, and convenient housing is essential to success in college. Although SMC does not have student housing, please review the information on this page for local housing options and tips.
* Santa Monica College has no affiliation with nor makes any recommendation regarding any of the accommodations, nor endorses, inspects or supervises premises listed.
Emergency Housing Information is available for SMC students to access resources in the community. Emergency Shelter, Housing Assistance, Safe Parking options can be found on SMC's Housing Resources website.
If you are looking for information on finding housing, housing tips or getting started with living arrangements with SMC's Weekly Housing Newsletter, check out the Housing & Commuting Guide.
Get GoPass for unlimited transit rides throughout L.A.
SMC students who pay their Student Benefits fee of $22.50 can now ride and transfer between several transit systems all over L.A. thanks to a Metro pilot program called GoPass. Ride Big Blue Bus, Metro, Culver City Bus, LADOT Dash, Norwalk Transit, Montebello Bus, City of Commerce, and a growing list of other transit agencies* by doing the following:
To learn more about your GoPass and how to register, click here.
SMC Safety Escort Service
Your safety is a key element to quality education. To protect members of the SMC community, the College provides students, staff, and faculty attending evening sessions with walking escorts within the area bounded by Delaware Street, 21st Street, Ocean Park Boulevard, and 14th Street.
The FREE service is provided Monday through Thursday, from 7 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.
To request a walking escort, simply dial 4300 from any telephone on campus. An SMC escort will meet you anywhere within the service area and walk you to your destination.