DC to distribute $41M in food help to more than 80,000 children

Tens of thousands of D.C. children will get help with meals from expanded food assistance programs.

Mayor Muriel Bowser announced that the District will issue an estimated $41 million in food assistance to more than 80,000 children between August and October.

Families with children who are eligible and were under the age of 6 last year on Sept. 30 can receive around $600 for the school year and $391 for the summer. Families with eligible children over 6 will also receive $391 for the summer.

The money comes from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, as well as Bowser’s requests made through the Department of Human Services and the Office of the State Superintendent of Education.

The money will be used for the Summer Pandemic EBT program for the current school year and for the P-EBT program serving children in households receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits who were under 6 last year on Sept. 30.

“Last week, we launched our summer meals program at more than 100 sites across all eight wards. This week, we expanded two critical programs that will deliver healthy meals and food to thousands of children and teens in our community — the School Breakfast Program and the P-EBT program,” Mayor Bowser said. “No matter where our young people are — whether they’re in school, at camp, at home, at child care — we are making sure that all families have access to the nutritious food that children need to thrive and live happy, healthy lives.”

The P-EBT card works like a debit card to buy food anywhere EBT benefits are accepted, and P-EBT can be used for any food items normally purchased with SNAP, according to a news release from the mayor’s office.

“We know this support comes at a critical time for District families,” said DHS Director Laura Green Zeilinger. “Our residents continue to recover from the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and face rapidly escalating food costs. We are grateful for the opportunity to partner with USDA to provide this assistance.”

Find out more information on the D.C. Department of Human Services website.

Valerie Bonk

Valerie Bonk started working at WTOP in 2016 and has lived in Howard County, Maryland, her entire life. She's thrilled to be a reporter for WTOP telling stories on air. She works as both a television and radio reporter in the Maryland and D.C. areas. 

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