With the school year ending, many kids face hunger this summer. The Summer Food Service Program ensures that low-income children continue to receive nutritious meals when school is not in session. More than 200 million free meals will be provided to children 18 years and under at Summer Food Service sites across the U.S.
Recently, First Lady of Virginia Dorothy McAuliffe announced the Virginia Food Access Network (VFAN), an interactive tool to accelerate efforts, connect partners, and share resources to end childhood hunger in Virginia and strengthen the local food system. The VFAN website, built through a collaboration of the College of William and Mary Center for Geospatial Analysis and the Commonwealth of Virginia, will be hosted by the Virginia Cooperative Extension program, and is available to the public at www.vfan.org.
Two ways your organization can help make sure kids don't go hunger this summer:
- Find partnerships, locate food sites, find and share data, and access tools and resources to help in the fight against hunger in Virginia at www.vfan.org.
- Your organization can participate as a Summer Food Service Program Site. Participants will be reimbursed for meals and some administrative costs, as well as receive technical assistance. Additional grants and funding resources are available for feeding sites. Find out how to become a feeding site/sponsor.
- Get the word out and promote summer feeding sites in your community. Visit the USDA's website for feeding site locations. Families can also text ‘Food’ to 877-877, and receive a text back with the address and program information for sites closest to them, or information about how to find food resources in their area. Additional resources are available from No Kid Hungry and ideas for how youth can help from Generation No Kid Hungry.