Nav menu toggle
Nav menu toggle
Close nav menu
Help Open
30 more Summer Eats sites where kids can get a free meal this summer
Children & Schools

Hunger impacts the health and futures of 1 in 7 children in Massachusetts. Project Bread works to ensure that low-income children in Massachusetts have access to nutritious meals year-round by working with schools and community partners across the state to improve, expand, and increase participation in School Breakfast, Summer Eats, and our Chefs in Schools program.

Help Open
30 more Summer Eats sites where kids can get a free meal this summer

The Facts

Only 15% of kids who qualify for free school meals are getting free summer meals. You can help open more Summer Eats sites for kids this summer who may be missing meals while school is out!

Kids count on summer meals

Last year, an average of 60,000 meals were served each day to kids across the state through the Summer Meals program.

Everything starts with school breakfast

Students who consistently start their day with a healthy meal had an average 17.5% increase in their standardized math scores over students who skip breakfast.

Children are among the most vulnerable to hunger

1 in 7 Massachusetts children is food insecure. This is approximately 187,290 children that don't reliably have enough food to eat.


Our Initiatives

Summer Eats

With the help of our community partners and policy makers, we promote the summer meals program, Summer Eats, to serve free meals to kids and teens while school meals are on summer vacation.

LEARN MORE
CLOSE

The Problem

1 in 3 public school students who rely on school meals may not know where to turn when summer vacation begins.

  • Hunger rises in the summer when children & teens lose access to school meals.
  • Summer hunger can lead to learning loss & weight gain, putting low income youth at a disadvantage when they return to school in the fall.

Our Solution

Summer Eats serves free meals to kids & teens while school is out

  • The Summer Food Service Program, known as Summer Eats in Massachusetts, is a vital resource for the more than 400,000 children across the state who qualify for free or reduced-price school meals during the school year.
  • The meals and program provided at Summer Eats sites helps to ensure that children have continued access to nutritious food during the summer months and can return to school healthy and ready to learn.
  • Summer hunger can lead to learning loss & weight gain, putting low income youth at a disadvantage when they return to school in the fall.

Find a Summer Eats site

  • Visit: www.meals4kids.org
  • Text: "FOOD" or "COMIDA" to 877-877
  • Call: 1-800-645-8333 (Project Bread's FoodSource Hotline)
  • Download: the "SummerEats" App for iPhone and Android

How you can help


Last summer (2017), Summer Eats served an average of 60,000 meals each day to kids across the state. But the program is only reaching 15% of the children who could benefit from Summer Eats. You can help open more Summer Eats sites for kids this year. Donate today.

Project Bread provides annual grants to support these programs statewide thanks to funding from Partners HealthCare Foundation, Share Our Strength, and our generous supporters—like you!

For communities seeking to expand their summer meals programming, resources are availble at www.meals4kids.org/summermeals.

The best summer meal programs combine a healthy meal with activities such as physical activity, arts, and educational lessons.
School Breakfast

We work with school districts and partners across Massachusetts to ensure that every child starts the day with a healthy breakfast.

LEARN MORE
CLOSE

Providing children with a healthy start to the day has benefits that extend far beyond the classroom. Children who eat breakfast are more likely to arrive on time to school, retain what they learn, behave better, and experience better health outcomes. For children living in food insecure homes, eating a healthy breakfast at home is often not possible. The National School Breakfast Program (NSBP) is a federally-funded program that helps bridge this gap for families, providing nutritious meals at low or no cost to low-income students at schools throughout the country.

Since 1994, Project Bread's Child Nutrition Outreach Program (CNOP) has worked with districts to increase participation in the School Breakfast Program in Massachusetts. CNOP provides technical assistance and innovative solutions to support schools to implement and expand breakfast programs. Through this work alongside school districts and other partners across the state, we strive to ensure that all children start the school day nourished and ready to learn. 

For communities seeking to expand their school breakfast program, resource are availble at www.meals4kids.org/breakfast.

Studies show that children who eat a good breakfast every day learn better.
Chefs in Schools

Our Chefs in Schools program helps school kitchen staff and parents learn to prepare healthy meals that children will eat.

LEARN MORE
CLOSE

Our Chefs in Schools program brings chefs into school cafeteria kitchens to work with staff to create healthier meals—on a public school budget—that children will find tasty and visually appealing. The program works to increase low-income students' consumption of healthy foods; expose students to nutritious meals that taste good; and give school districts the tools they need to offer healthy, fresh meals every day. 

The program launched in Boston Public Schools in 2006. Since then, we have expanded the program to additional communities, with the ultimate goal of transforming the quality of school meals across Massachusetts. 

Through our Chefs in Schools Program, Project Bread has demonstrated that healthy food can be offered within the federal reimbursable meal budget that, when prepared in an appealing way, children will eat it. According to research done in collaboration with the Harvard School of Public Health, Chefs in Schools not only improves the overall nutritional quality of school meals, but also reduces food waste in schools. 

For school food service staff or parents and community members looking to make healthy changes to your school or districts breakfast and lunch programs, visit www.transformschoolfood.org for Chefs in Schools recipes and resources. 

Our Chefs in Schools program engages kids with delicious and healthy lunches.

Making a Difference

Through diverse and strategic collaborations, we provide solutions in the places children go each day. We provide resources to help schools — and families — prepare nutritious, appealing food that kids truly want to eat. And together, we’re changing lives. 



Get Involved

Join us as we work to help children create good eating habits for a lifetime. We’re changing lives, with your support.