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East County Thursday, Jun. 4, 2015 5 years ago

Manatee County students receive free meals all summer

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The Manatee County School District's Food and Nutrition Services Department will feed students 18 and younger June 9 through Aug. 14 during its Summer Food Service Program.
by: Amanda Sebastiano Staff Writer

As school wraps up this week until late August, students will soon be spending most of their days back at home and parents regain responsibilities of feeding their children three meals a day.

To give parents a break from the feeding frenzy, and to help fight summer hunger, the Manatee County School District's Food and Nutrition Services Department will feed all students ages 18 and younger, as part of the Summer Food Service Program.

The program kicks off June 9 and runs through Aug. 14. It will provide children with free breakfast, lunch and snacks five days a week. All children can participate in the program, regardless of household income.

A USDA program designed to ensure in need children have access to proper nutrition and regular meals throughout the summer when they aren't receiving free or reduced meals at school, the movement is expanding this year by adding more site locations and a second mobile feeding bus.

The second bus will allow the department to provide meals to more students at more locations throughout the county. The busses will serve hot entrees, such as cheeseburgers, chicken tenders and chicken sandwiches. 

Children can also get meals during summer camp at venues such as YMCA locations, churches and Boys and Girls clubs. Summer menu items include wraps, hoagie sandwiches, fresh fruit and vegetables.

The initiative is a federally funded reimbursement program for meals served from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. No county general funds will be used for the program.

To find participating locations, dial 211, call 651-6550, ext. 2000, or visit http://Summerfoodflorida.org.

Contact Amanda Sebastiano at [email protected].

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