Summer Food Service Program reimburses eligible organizations for providing free meals to children in low-income areas

Bright from the Start: Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning (DECAL) is looking for eligible organizations to sponsor the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) in 2019. SFSP, funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), provides access to healthy meals to children during the summer months when school is not in session. DECAL administers the SFSP in Georgia.

DECAL is focusing on boosting the number of sponsors participating in the program, particularly in South Georgia, to ensure summer meals availability for children across the state. Representatives from DECAL are available to meet with community organizations to provide information and answer questions about becoming a sponsor.

The SFSP reimburses non-profit, governmental, and other eligible organizations for providing free meals to children in low-income areas during the summer months. The following entities can qualify as sponsors: public or private nonprofit schools; universities, colleges, or camps; units of local and state government; and private nonprofit organizations, including faith-based organizations considered tax exempt by the IRS. Sponsors can operate the program and feed children at various sites such as schools, churches, recreation centers, community and migrant centers, and other areas where children congregate. Mobile meal sites are also an option for sponsors – particularly in rural areas of the state.

“The Summer Food Service Program is a critically important in combating childhood hunger
during the summer,” said Sonja Adams, director of Provider Services for DECAL’s Nutrition
Division. “Sponsoring organizations ensure children across the state have access to nutritious and well-balanced meals during the summer months when school is not in session.”

Sponsors receive training and support relating to the application process; setting up and
operating a successful SFSP; and nutrition education. They also receive technical assistance while the program is operating. For more information about the SFSP, contact Cindy Kicklighter, Marketing & Outreach Manager, at or (404) 656-3221.

For more information on becoming an SFSP sponsor, visit Becoming a Sponsor or contact the SFSP team toll free at 1-855-550-SFSP (7377) or via e-mail at


This is a press release from Bright from the Start – Georgia.

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