Summer Food Service Program Available for Sponsorship

March 21, 2002

The West Virginia Department of Education announces the availability of sponsorship opportunities for the Summer Food Service Program 2002 a program designed to ensure that state children in lower-income areas can continue to receive nutritious meals during long school vacations when they do not have access to school lunch or breakfast.  

Any sponsor of the program is permitted to contract through a bidding procedure with a food service management company to operate its entire food service or for the preparation of meals to be served under this program. All meals must meet federal guidelines.  

The Summer Food Service Program draws children into supervised activities that are safe, fun and filled with learning opportunities. Children benefit nutritionally by receiving complete, wholesome meals, and parents benefit from some help in stretching their food dollars.  

The program encourages communities to provide safe places for children to go and be with other children and supportive adults.  

Although some 188,698 children in West Virginia depend on nutritious free and reduced-price meals and snacks at school for 10 months of the year, only 14,727 receive the free meals provided by the Summer Food Service Program. Summer Food Service sponsors receive payment for serving healthy meals and snacks to children and teenagers, 18 and younger, at approved sites in low-income areas. Schools, public agencies and private non-profit organizations may apply to sponsor the program.  

All sponsors receive training before beginning the program to learn how to plan, operate and monitor a successful food service program.  

Current regulations require that new food service management companies register with the state as a prerequisite to participating in any program in 2002. Registration will be revoked if a food service management company does not follow the proper bidding procedure.  

Interested agencies should contact the West Virginia Department of Education, Office of Child Nutrition, Building 6, Room 248, 1900 Kanawha Boulevard East, Charleston, WV 25305-0330 or phone 304-558-4856.

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