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District Seeks Applications for Sponsors of the Summer Food Service Program

Friday, February 1, 2019

Media Contact: Fred Lewis, [email protected]

The District of Columbia Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) announces the availability of federal funds to assist sponsors and their meal sites in participating in the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Summer Food Service Program (SFSP), known locally as the DC Free Summer Meals Program (FSMP). The 2019 FSMP application period is Feb. 8 through May 11, 2019. Qualifying organizations may apply to serve as sponsors through June 15.  

The FSMP reimburses sponsoring organizations in the District of Columbia that provide nutritious meals in economically disadvantaged areas during the summer months to children age 18 and younger and people age 18 and older who are determined by a state or a local public educational agency of a state to be mentally or physically disabled and who participate in a public or nonprofit private school program established for the mentally or physically handicapped. Eligible applicants must be 501c3 tax exempt organizations, such as public and private nonprofit community-based organizations, school food authorities, faith-based organizations, housing authorities and units of local and federal government. Public or private nonprofit day or overnight summer camps may participate as well. A for-profit organization may not apply as a sponsor in the program, but may be eligible to participate as a site. The official program dates are Monday, June 17 through Sunday, Aug. 25, 2019. Meal site operation dates, days and times vary by location, therefore beginning in mid-June you may call 1-866-3-HUNGRY or Text “FOOD” to 877-877 to find open meal sites participating in the DC Free Summer Meals Program. Site information is updated on a weekly basis.

The DC Free Summer Meals Program was created as a safeguard for children in under-served, low-income areas of the District of Columbia to ensure continued access to adequate nutrition during the long summer vacation when access to school breakfast and lunch meals are unavailable. In accordance with the USDA guidelines, organizations may be reimbursed for serving up to three eligible meals per day at approved locations. Organizations may provide meals in the evenings, during the weekends and on holidays. The health and well-being of children in the District is important, therefore access to nutritious meals should not end when school is out.

In accordance with Federal civil rights law and US Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, disability, age, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA.  
Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g. Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.), should contact the Agency (State or local) where they applied for benefits.  Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339.  Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.
To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD-3027) found on USDA's websie, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by:

  • Mail: US Department of Agriculture, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Ave. SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410;
  • Fax: (202) 690-7442; or
  • Email: Pro[email protected].

This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

For more information or an application to participate in the DC Free Summer Meals Program, please visit http://dcsummermeals.dc.gov or contact:

Karyn Kennedy, Program Specialist
DC Free Summer Meals Program
OSSE - Division of Health and Wellness
Office Phone: (202) 899-6118
Email: [email protected]

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