Anything L.A. Liberal Magazine
Jul 062016


The Summer Food Service Program (SFSP), locally referred to as the Summer Meals Program, is a federally funded, state administered program that provides meals to low-income children throughout the summer so that students are able to eat nutritious meals when school is out of session. The goal of this program is to ensure that no child goes hungry during the summer months.

Free breakfast, lunch, and snacks are available to anyone under the age of 18 at sites including libraries, schools, non-profits organizations, and recreation centers. Meals and snacks are also available to individuals with disabilities over the age of 18, who participate in school programs for people who are mentally or physically disabled. No application or proof of income is needed. To find a summer meal site near you, please visit or call 1-866-348-6479.

If you would like to partner with the SFSP and become a sponsor site, please visit the California Department of Education (CDE) at Sponsors can be local government agencies, camps, faith-based, or other non-profit organizations. Sponsoring agencies may also manage multiple sites. The CDE reimburses agencies for the cost of meals provided, as well as for the operational and the administrative cost of providing meals.

Volunteers are also needed to help run each site. Organizing activities for children and teens encourages them to come back to the site day after day. Some of these activities include arts and crafts, tutoring, mentoring, drama, sports, and computer training. In addition to healthy meals, the SFSP also promotes physical, social, and educational development. For information on volunteer opportunities, please contact your local summer meal site to learn more.

The Summer Meals Program is the right idea at the right time! No child should go hungry in Los Angeles, the city known for its excess. If you have the time and heart: VOLUNTEER! No child deserves to be hungry.