On September 30 the child nutrition bill will expire and it’s time Congress got to work to ensure our children have access to healthy and nutritious food they need to learn, grow, and thrive. Tell Congress to invest in our children and take action on a strong Child Nutrition Reauthorization. (Please read the below information in the “about” section underneath the call in steps.)
Make your voice heard TODAY!
- Call this toll-free hotline at 888-398-8702, listen to the pre-recorded message and enter your zip code when prompted. (make four different phone calls for zip codes: 40511 – Barr, 41503 – Rogers, 41179 – Massie, 40444 – Guthrie)
- Connect with your House member first. (Guthrie, Massie, Rogers and Barr) after following steps below each time, connect with Senate next (Rand, McConnell)
- Once you are connected with your first Member of Congress, state that you are a constituent and give your name and your hometown.
- Let them know you are calling about the child nutrition programs and deliver this important message:
“I am your constituent and a Supporter of God’s Pantry Food Bank and I’m calling about Child Nutrition Reauthorization. Too many kids in our community are not getting the food they need, particularly during the summer months when school is out. As my member of Congress, you can do something about it. I urge you to pass a strong child nutrition bill that provides more options to get food to kids that need our help by providing flexibility in operating the Summer Food Service Program and streamlining program requirements for providers that operate both afterschool and summer meal programs.”
- Dial back to make sure you speak with both of your Senators (McConnell, Rand) and your Representative (Guthrie, Massie, Rogers and Barr)
FYI – They (elected official office) may ask for your full name and email address
About Child Nutrition Reauthorization (CNR)
Every five years, Congress must reauthorize child nutrition programs. During this process, Congress will debate new funding levels, ways to strengthen and improve the programs, and develop new policies to make sure our nation’s children have access to healthy, nutritious food. The current bill, the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, is set to expire on September 30, 2015.
Feeding America will be primarily focused on strengthening the following programs:
- The Summer Food Service Program (SFSP): Provides free meals and snacks to low-income children during the summer months.
- Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP): Provides nutritious meals and snacks to children and adults in designated child and adult care centers, as well as snacks and suppers to children in afterschool programs.
- Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC): Provides nutritious foods and nutrition education for low-income, at risk women, infants.
- The School Breakfast Program (SBP): Provides nutritionally balanced breakfast to qualified children.
- National School Lunch Program (NSLP): Provides nutritionally balanced lunch to qualified children.
Feeding America’s Policy Priorities
We believe that every child should have the food they need to thrive and succeed during the school year and beyond. Our policy recommendations seek to increase access so more children can get the food they need while streamlining programs and increasing flexibility to make it easier for local program operators to reach kids when they are out of school – over the summer, on weekends, and during holidays.
- Strengthen States’ Ability to Reach Kids During the Summer: Currently, only 18% of children who receive lunch assistance during the school year receive food assistance during the summer. Congress should:
- Allow communities to adopt alternate program models in areas where children lack access to a summer feeding site, such as providing families with a summer grocery card or waiving the congregate requirement and allowing kids to take food home.
- Make it easier for community organizations to operate summer programs by aligning the area eligibility requirement with educational programs to allow additional learning programs to participate.
- Streamline Regulations for Community Based Providers: Congress should allow community providers to streamline operations and operate the Summer Food Service Program year round. Right now, community based providers have to operate the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) after school and the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) during the summer, even though they are serving the same kids, often at the same sites.
- Allow Flexibility to Better Reach Kids During Weekends: Congress should waive the congregate feeding requirement to allow providers to send meals home with children on weekends and long holidays when afterschool and other programs are not available.
- Strengthen Access and Quality in School Meal Programs and WIC: We must continue to work to improve access to school breakfast, maintain strong nutrition standards for school meals, and increase access to WIC.