In This Section

Notes from the Backpack Podcast

Building Healthy Minds and Bodies

Nearly 49 million Americans—one in five children—live in households that lack the means to get enough nutritious food on a regular basis. Students who don’t have enough to eat are likely to get sick more often, do not perform as well in school and are less likely to graduate from high school and go on to college.

Federal nutrition programs play a critical role in helping students build healthy minds and bodies. The National School Breakfast and School Lunch Programs, offered during the school year, are provided to students most in need at free or reduced costs.  Over the summer the USDA Summer Meals Program provides nutritious, no-cost meals when school is not in session.

These meals, when eaten, provide students with balanced nutrition and the majority of calories needed every day to grow and thrive.

School meals can provide needed nutrition

Learn More

  • Summer texting hotline (Share Our Strength): Families in need can text the word “FOOD” or “COMIDA” (in Spanish) to 877-877 and receive a text back with the address of summer feeding sites closest to them, or information about how to find their closest feeding site.
  • Cooking Matters (Share Our Strength): Helps families to shop for and cook healthy meals on a budget, as part of Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign.