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Barbara Cracknell, (503) 947-5911

February 7, 2011

Sponsors Invited to Offer Summer Food Programs for Children

SALEM – Superintendent Susan Castillo announced today that the Oregon Department of Education is looking for organizations to participate in the 2011 Summer Food Service Program.

“Because our state has the second highest child hunger rate in the nation, many of our families rely heavily on the meals students receive at school to supplement what is available at home,” said State Superintendent Susan Castillo. “Summer can be a very challenging time for our families faced with food insecurity as they struggle to make difficult decisions about putting food on the table or paying for other vital necessities. It is more critical than ever that we work together to provide students with the nutritious meals they need and deserve over the summer months.”

In Oregon, many students are at risk of going hungry when the school year ends and school lunches are no longer available. For many children, school meals are the only complete and nutritious meals they eat, and in the summer they go without. The Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) can help to fill the summer meal gap for low-income children. Schools and community organizations can make a difference in the lives of hungry children by serving meals through the Summer Food Service Program. Approved sponsors are reimbursed for serving meals that meet federal nutritional guidelines. A sponsor may contract for food service from a qualified vendor, or prepare their own meals if they have appropriate facilities and a staff skilled in large quantity food preparation.

Sponsoring organizations must be fully capable of managing a food service program and must be one of the following:
• Public or private non-profit school
• Local, municipal, county, tribal, or state government
• Public or private nonprofit college or university
• Public or private nonprofit summer camp or a private, nonprofit organization

In addition, a meal site must meet geographic or enrollment criteria. Meal sites may be located in a variety of settings, including schools, recreation centers, playgrounds, parks, housing projects, community centers, migrant centers, Indian reservations, day camps, universities, community colleges and residential summer camps. Programs are especially successful when connected to organized cultural, educational, or recreational programs.

A sponsor must attend a training session and demonstrate ability to operate a program and comply with regulations. For more information and training dates/locations, please contact Barbara Cracknell, Summer Food Service Program Coordinator at (503) 947-5911 or barbara.cracknell@state.or.us eMail or visit our website at: http://www.ode.state.or.us/search/results/?id=208.

Want to learn more?
The USDA is offering a series of webinars on Summer Food Service Programs. These webinars are free and open to the public. Simply visit http://vovici.com/wsb.dll/s/17fb9g48fe7 to register. Additional information with be provided to registered participants in advance of the Webinars.

USDA Summer Food Service Program Webinars:
Thursday, 2/10/11, 12:00pm – 1:00pm EST
Thursday, 2/10/11, 3:00pm – 4:00pm EST
Monday, 2/14/11, 3:00pm – 4:00pm EST
Thursday, 2/24/11, 5:00pm – 6:00pm EST
Tuesday, 3/8/11, 6:00pm – 7:00pm EST

Additional information on the Summer Food Service Program can be found on the USDA Food and Nutrition Service Website: www.summerfood.usda.gov.

Susan Castillo, State Superintendent of Public Instruction

Oregon Department of Education News Releases contain information that was originally released to the press as an official release.  Refer to each News Release for the details.

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Oregon Department of Education
Voice: 503-947-5600
Fax: 503-378-5156
255 Capitol Street NE
Salem, OR 97310-0203

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