State seeking organizations to serve meals to children during summer months

Summer Food Program for Kids

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) is looking for organizations throughout the state to help feed thousands of children who would otherwise go without meals during the summer months when school is not in session.

The Summer Food Service Program reimburses organizations for meals they serve to children who are at risk of not having enough to eat. The program is only one of the ways Missouri is working to fight childhood hunger.

“Preventing food insecurity in children is an important step in improving the health of Missourians,” said Dr. Randall Williams, DHSS director. “Without the assistance of organizations across the state, many of Missouri’s children would go hungry during the summer months. Thank you to all organizations who have participated in the past, and thank you to any organization considering participating this summer. DHSS would be happy to answer any questions an organization may have as they consider participating in this program.”

The summer food program provides nutritious meals to children under age 18 during the summer months when school breakfast and lunch programs are not operating.

Organizations eligible to participate in the program include schools, faith-based organizations, camps, private nonprofit agencies and local government entities. The sites are required to be located in areas where at least half of the children are eligible to receive free or reduced-price meals.

The federally funded program is administered by DHSS. The department will accept applications March 1 through May 15 to participate in the program. Organizations interested in becoming sponsors are required to attend training. 

More information about the Summer Food Service Program is available online at, by telephone at 888-435-1464 (toll-free) or through RELAY MISSOURI for the Hearing and Speech Impaired by dialing 711 or 1-800-676-3777.  Potential sponsors may also write to the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, Summer Food Service Program, P.O. Box 570, Jefferson City, MO 65102.