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USDA Summer Food Service Program Seeks Sponsors to Keep Keiki Healthy

January 29, 2021, 3:03 PM HST
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Locally grown breadfruit (‘ulu) will be served in a tortilla with kalua pork and spinach in school cafeterias statewide. PC: Department of Education

The US Department of Agriculture’s Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) is seeking sponsor organizations on all islands to help provide children in low-income communities with free meals during the summer months.

The SFSP provides nutritious meals that help children to learn, play, and grow during the summer break when many schools are not in session.

Schools, public agencies, churches and private nonprofit organizations may apply to be SFSP sponsors. Sponsoring organizations receive reimbursements for serving healthy meals and snacks at approved sites to children and teenagers, 18 years and younger. Sponsors are encouraged to provide educational or recreational activities.

“Summer food programs are critical for many keiki who rely on school meals for their daily nutrition,” Hawai‘i State Superintendent Dr. Christina Kishimoto said. “Balanced meals help to fuel learning, physical activities and growth. We thank our partners for their tremendous support during the summer break.”

In 2020, SFSP meals were served at 88 locations throughout the state. Locations varied from nonprofit organizations, preschools, churches, parks, and housing facilities. The Hawai‘i State Department of Education has served meals at 203 school locations in all four counties through its Seamless Summer Option program.

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The Hawai‘i Child Nutrition Programs (HCNP) will conduct workshops for new and returning sponsors on most islands from March 22 to April 2. Personnel responsible for administering the SFSP will be required to attend.

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For more information about SFSP, contact Daniel Sutcharitkul at the Hawai‘i Child Nutrition Programs at 808-587-3600 or via email at [email protected].

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