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Summer Food Service Program to Feed the Children of Nebraska

LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) – One in six children in the United States worry about their next meal, according to Feeding America. To combat this disturbing trend, the Nebraska Department of Education is distributing meals to children all summer long.

The Summer Food Service Program is a USDA-funded initiative designed to serve meals to children when they are not in class. In the summer of 2021, the Summer Food Service Program served 1,945,366 meals at over 500 locations across the state. As inflation drives up the costs of almost everything, including everyday groceries, the program is here again for families who need a little help.

“Having access to summer meals helps provide some financial security to families and households that have felt the burden the most, that’s really what summer meals are designed to help serve,” Kayte said. Partch, director of Nebraska child nutrition programs. “We want to make sure every family has the resources they need to raise children who can succeed and reach their potential.”

The program is also designed to help children adopt better lifestyles and learn the importance of eating healthier foods.

In the state of Nebraska, research shows that 12.3% of the state’s population is food insecure. Children in Nebraska had a food insecurity rate of 16.7%. Regardless of the situation, any child between the ages of one and 18 is welcome to accept food at the program.

“Everything good in society is certainly born out of investment in them, by everyone who wants them to succeed,” Partch said. “I certainly think Nebraskans belong to that group of people who want their children to grow up to be successful and contribute to the community. I just think of summer meals as one of those ways to demonstrate that.

There are a number of places around the state offering free meals under the Summer Food Service Program, you can find the site closest to you by searching here. You can text “FOOD” to 304-304 for more information on programs near you.

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