Photo: Island Harvest
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Program feeds food-insecure children when school is out for summer

Stepping in to provide a crucial lifeline during the summer months, Island Harvest Food Bank’s Summer Food Service Program began on Monday, June 24, delivering a combination of breakfasts, lunches and snacks to programs operated by community centers, summer and day camps, libraries, churches, municipal agencies and community-based organizations across Long Island.

The SFSP, which is administered by the Food and Nutrition Service, an agency of the USDA, ensures meals will be provided for children through August 30, making sure that food-insecure children have access to nutritious food when they can no longer rely on their schools’ free breakfast and lunch programs.

A recent Map the Meal Gap report for Long Island issued by Feeding America estimated 44,780 children in Nassau and Suffolk counties were food insecure in 2022, and many children face increased risk of food insecurity once the school year ends.

“For parents struggling to make ends meet, summer can be stressful, especially with the high cost of groceries and other essential items, and these months should not be a time for children to worry about when their next meal will be,” said Randi Shubin Dresner, president and CEO of Island Harvest. “The SFSP allows us to partner with community programs to help address the public health crisis of food insecurity, especially among the most vulnerable among us — children.”

Meals and snacks are provided, at no charge, to children 18 years old and younger. For more information about the Summer Food Service Program, visit: https://www.islandharvest.org/children/. To learn more about Island Harvest, visit islandharvest.org.

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