Free Meals for the Summer! Where do I Sign Up?

May 30, 2022 | Christine Hradek

child eating a sandwich

Hasn’t it been nice sending your children to school all year knowing they have access to free, nutritious meals every day? Think of all the time and money you’ve saved without having to grocery shop, meal prep, or clean up those meals. Well, that doesn’t have to change just because school is ending. Did you know that summer meal sites offer free meals for all children and teens age 18 and under? No application or registration is required, just stop by and enjoy! Participating at a summer meal site with your family not only saves you time and money, it also helps support your school and community.

There are three easy ways to find where summer meal sites are operating:

  • Text “Food” or “Comida” to 304-304
  • Call any of these numbers:
    • 2-1-1
    • 1-866-3-HUNGRY (1-866-348-6479), for English
    • 1-877-8-HAMBRE (1-877-842-6273), for Spanish
  • Visit USDA Meals for Kids Site Finder

Spend more time with your family this summer and less time worrying about what to make for meals. Learn more about your local sites today!

Meg Collins, MS, RDN

Meg is a Registered Dietitian with the Iowa Department of Education. Meg enjoys cooking for family and friends, strength training, and any kind of art project–drawing, watercolor painting and lettering are her favorites! The Iowa Department of Education is an equal opportunity provider.

Christine Hradek

Christine Hradek is a State Nutrition Specialist with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. She coordinates ISU’s programs which help families with low income make healthy choices with limited food budgets. Christine loves helping families learn to prepare healthy foods, have fun in the kitchen and save money. In her spare time, Christine enjoys cooking, entertaining and cheering on her favorite college football teams with her family and friends.

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