School nutrition programs across the Commonwealth have been hard at work. Check out the recent news and resources in support of school meals.
With summer officially here, Summer Eats sites are up and running where all kids and teens eat for free, no identification or registration required with locations all across Massachusetts during the summer months!
Join us in congratulating Rob Leshin, Director of the Office for Food and Nutrition Programs at the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) and Brittany Mangini, Director of Food Security and Nutrition at the Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA) for being named co-recipients of Project Bread’s 2022 Patrick Hughes Award for Social Justice. They were recognized for their leadership, creativity and passion to ensure families within the Commonwealth had enough to eat.
Food Connects, a non-profit Food Hub in Brattleboro, VT, is bringing regionally sourced food to Massachusetts Schools in the Pioneer Valley. In the 2021-2022 school year, Food Connects delivered more than $30,000 in regional products to Massachusetts schools like Greenfield Public Schools. If you are a food service director, work in a school, and are interested in integrating more local foods in you school meals, reach out to Food Connects.
Project Bread’s efforts to end hunger is making progress. The Massachusetts Senate released its FY2023 budget proposal with plans that include significant investments to address food insecurity. Project Bread encourages a one-year extension of free school meals statewide for 2022-2023 school year while the budget process continues.
The USDA announced $100 million to launch Healthy Food Incentive Fund to support school meal programs to improve the nutritional quality of school meals. It is designed to support peer to peer learning, recognize local programs for leadership, excellence and efforts to deliver health nutritious food. The USDA is also investing $60 million to increase purchases through Farm-to-School problems that have been proven as a model of increasing markets for farmers via child nutrition programs to provide children healthy, fresh food.