That’s why a number of school systems in the area make sure that kids don’t suffer a “nutrition gap” when school lets out.
There are summer food programs from Frederick, Maryland to Fairfax, Virginia that make sure kids can get the meals they need to carry them through the day. Some school systems even continue a breakfast program, since for many kids the only meals they get consistently come when they go to school.
In Fairfax County, more than 50,000 kids qualify for free and reduced meals. In Montgomery County, nearly one third of the county’s 144,000 students qualify for the food programs.
Federal data shows that 14.5 percent of U.S. households experienced food insecurity in 2012, according to data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).
In Virginia, The Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) kicked off Thursday. The program provides free meals to children when school is out and is available for children and teenagers 18 years and younger. Families can find the closest meal site by texting “food” to 877-877, calling 211 or calling 866-3-HUNGRY.