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Children under the age of 18 and even some adults will have access to free meals this summer through the Summer Food Service Program.

The Bright from the Start: Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning (DECAL) program, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), annually administers the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) to the school-aged children on free or reduced lunch. Currently, more than 60% of Georgia’s student population is eligible under the program.

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The SFSP provides access to free meals in low-income areas during the summer months when students are out of school and may not have access to well-balanced meals throughout the day.

Parents and children can find area sites where meals will be served by:

  • visiting DECAL’s website – click here
  • calling 1-855- 550-SFSP (7377)
  • texting “FOODGA” to 877-877 (standard messaging and data rates apply)

Nutrition Services Director, Falita Flowers, explained the importance of the Summer Food Service Program. “The SFSP is a critical summer resource for children when school is out of session. During the summer, children who receive free and reduced-price meals no longer have that resource available to them. This program helps fill the gap and ensures children have access to free, healthy meals so they can continue to play, learn, and grow.”

Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.) should contact the agency (state or local) where they applied for benefits. Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.


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Jessica Szilagyi is statewide contributor for All On Georgia and Market Manager for Southeast Georgia. Her main focus with All On Georgia is state and local politics as well as agriculture. She’s served as a policy analyst at the State Capitol and as a campaign manager in political races across the state.

She writes for and has two blogs of her own: ‘The Perspicacious Conservative’, a political blog, and ‘Hair Blowers to Lawn Mowers’, a blog on moving from Atlanta to rural Georgia. Jessica is also a contributor for Fox5 Atlanta’s ‘Like it Or Not.’