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Commissioner Miller Encourages Participation in 2019 Summer Nutrition Programs (1/28/2019)

For Immediate Release
January 28, 2019

  

PRESS RELEASE

 

COMMISSIONER MILLER ENCOURAGES ORGANIZATIONS TO APPLY FOR PARTICIPATION IN 2019 SUMMER NUTRITION PROGRAMS


AUSTIN –  Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller today announced the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA) is accepting applications for its 2019 summer nutrition programs. These programs connect community organizations and schools with federal funds to provide healthy meals for Texas children who may not always have access to good nutrition when school cafeterias are closed for summer.

 

“TDA partners with organizations across Texas to help ensure the last school bell does not signal the start of hunger for some Texas children,” Commissioner Miller said. “Serving summer meals helps to strengthen Texas communities by offering children the nutrition they may need for an active, healthy summer. I encourage any eligible organization to join with TDA in this effort so more Texas children can enjoy all that Texas has to offer in the summer months and return to school in the fall ready to succeed.”

 

Approximately 23 percent of Texas children are considered food insecure, meaning they do not have consistent access to the nutrition they need for an active, healthy life. In partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, TDA administers federally funded programs to help address childhood hunger during the summer. The Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) provides schools, nonprofit summer camps, governmental entities and other nonprofit organizations such as churches with the opportunity to serve meals to children across Texas. Schools have the option of participating in the Seamless Summer Option (SSO) or SFSP, allowing them to continue meal service after the academic year ends.

 

Organizations join with TDA as sponsors to serve meals at sites in designated areas, such as areas where more than 50 percent of children are eligible for free or reduced-price meals in the National School Lunch Program. Meals will be provided to individuals age 18 and under without charge. Adults over the age of 18 are eligible for summer meals if they are determined by a state educational agency or local public educational agency of a state to have a mental or physical disability and they participate in a public or nonprofit private school program established for people with mental or physical disabilities.

 

All meal sites must be sponsored by an organization that has a contract with TDA. Approved SSO and SFSP sponsors, operating in accordance with federal and state regulations, will be reimbursed for meals served to children. All new sponsors are required to take training courses before participating in SFSP. Some applications may require additional review, and sponsors are encouraged to visit www.summerfood.org to determine if their organization falls into this category. The SFSP application deadline for new sponsors and those requiring more thorough review is April 15, 2019. All other returning SFSP sponsors must apply by May 1, 2019. The deadline for all SSO applications is May 31, 2019.

 

For more information about TDA’s Summer Nutrition Programs, visit www.summerfood.org.

 

This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

 

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Contact: Maddison Jaureguito

(512) 463-7899