Contact: Colleen Barton Sutton, firstname.lastname@example.org, 202-640-1121
BALTIMORE, June 14, 2016 – Maryland ranks seventh in the nation for reaching low-income children with summer meals. According to Hunger Doesn’t Take a Vacation (pdf), an annual analysis by the Food Research & Action Center (FRAC), 63,080 low-income children in Maryland received summer meals on an average day in July 2015 — an increase of 5.7 percent from the previous summer. Summer meals reached 22.2 low-income students for every 100 low-income children who received school lunch in the 2014–2015 school year, outpacing that national rate of 15.8:100.
“Summer means a hunger gap as well as a learning gap for thousands of Maryland children,” said Michael J. Wilson, director of Maryland Hunger Solutions. “Summer meals are an important part of the answer. We want to ensure that more children at risk of hunger across the state return to school in the fall healthy and ready to learn.”
Maryland’s Summer Food Service Program provides nutritious meals and snacks to children (ages 18 and under) in low-income areas during June, July, and August when school is not in session. Meals and snacks are served at sites which can be located at schools, community centers, faith-based organizations, local libraries, recreation centers and other places in neighborhoods across the state.
Maryland Hunger Solutions is working collaboratively at all levels to overcome the barriers associated with the program to ensure that children throughout Maryland have access to nutritious free meals during the summer.
To find a summer meals site in the state, visit mdsummermeals.org.
About the report:
Data for Maryland came from an annual report released by the Food Research & Action Center (FRAC), the lead advocacy organization working to end hunger in America through stronger public policies. The FRAC report, Hunger Doesn’t Take A Vacation, gives data for all states and looks at national trends. FRAC measures national summer participation during the month of July, when typically all children are out of school throughout the month and lose access to school meals.