WASHINGTON, July 5, 2017 - USDA has awarded $31.5 million in Electronic Benefits Transfer for Children Grants to look into ways to alleviate hunger among children during the summer, including new projects in Texas and Tennessee.

The department says its evaluations show that Summer EBT can significantly reduce very low food security among children, the most severe form of food insecurity, by a third.  During the academic year, free and reduced-price school meals help ensure that nearly 22 million low-income children have consistent access to nutritious food through the National School Lunch Program, but only about one in six of those children currently participate in summer meals programs. “USDA has made significant efforts to reach these children through traditional summer meals programs and is testing the use of Summer EBT to help fill the gaps,” said Yvette Jackson, acting deputy under secretary for Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services.

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