Summer Feeding Sites Goal
During the school year, many children receive free and reduced-price breakfast and lunch through the National School Breakfast and Lunch Programs. But often nutritious meals are not available during the summer months when school is out. Each summer, 22.3 million students are at risk of going hungry or depending on less nutritious food when the school year ends and school lunches are no longer available. For many children, school meals are the only complete and nutritious meals they eat, and in the summer they go without. This gap makes children more prone to hunger, poor nutrition, obesity, illness, and decreased performance once school begins again.
The Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) is a federally funded program designed to ensure that school-aged children in lower income areas continue to receive nutritious meals during the long school vacations when they do not have access to school lunch or breakfast. But only a fraction of the children in need are reached due to a lack of feeding sites. Faith-based organizations can work to fill the summer meal gap and help keep children eating healthy while school is out by partnering with the SFSP to sponsor, host, or provide volunteers for a feeding site.