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Health

This online tool shows where your child can get food over the summer

Even amidst the summer break when schools are closed, many families might still require access to free meals for their kids.

For those seeking support, an online search tool stands ready to aid in locating a summer meal site within their vicinity.

Utilizing the Summer Meal Site Finder, families can pinpoint where free meals are being offered. Currently encompassing data from 30 states, this tool was crafted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food and Nutrition Service.

How to Navigate the Tool

The online resource is accessible at no cost and can be utilized on various devices such as tablets, smartphones, and more.

Upon launching the webpage, a map delineates the locations of free meal sites, identified by either blue or orange dots.

Two distinct types of sites are featured: those allowing on-site dining (blue dots) and those providing meals to-go (orange dots). Both extend free meals and snacks to children aged 18 and under.

Furthermore, the tool incorporates a search bar where users can input an address or zip code to ascertain the proximity of a summer meal site.

In instances where a search yields no results, the USDA advises that the nearby summer sites might not have commenced operations for the season or could have ceased operations. Users are encouraged to monitor the site finder regularly, as it undergoes updates every Friday.

Users are also empowered to report any inaccuracies in the site finder to their local state agency.

Where is the Meal Service Accessible?

As of May 24, the site finder encompasses data for the following states:

•Alaska
•Arkansas
•Arizona
•California
•Colorado
•Florida
•Georgia
•Iowa
•Idaho
•Illinois
•Indiana
•Kansas
•Kentucky
•Louisiana
•Minnesota
•Missouri
•Mississippi
•North Carolina
•North Dakota
•Nebraska
•Oregon
•Pennsylvania
•South Carolina
•South Dakota
•Tennessee
•Texas
•Utah
•Virginia
•Wisconsin
•West Virginia

What to Do if Your State is Unlisted

For individuals residing in states where no free meal services are displayed, the USDA advises contacting the site directly or reaching out to a local state agency to explore alternatives.

Families in need of additional food assistance for their children can also connect with the USDA’s National Hunger Hotline. The hotline operates in both English and Spanish, with the following numbers available Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. ET: • 1-866-348-6479 (English) • 1-877-842-6273 (Spanish)

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