Make a difference in your community: Sponsor a Summer Food Service Program

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Thursday, Jan. 13, 2022

CONTACT: Mary Stadick Smith, 605-773-7228, or Ruth Raveling, 605-773-2593


Make a difference in your community: Sponsor a Summer Food Service Program

PIERRE, S.D. - The South Dakota Department of Education’s division of Child and Adult Nutrition Services is seeking local sponsors to assist with running a federally funded program that provides nutritious meals and snacks to children in low-income areas during the summer months.


Community organizations, nonprofits, schools, and tribal and local governments can apply to be sponsors if they operate in low-income areas, serve a group of mostly low-income children, or operate a summer camp with a high proportion of low-income participants. Parks and recreation departments, city and county health departments, libraries, and neighborhood service agencies can also participate as sites or sponsors.


Many South Dakota children receive free and reduced-price meals through the School Breakfast and National School Lunch Programs, but these programs are not available during the summer months, when school is not in session. To fill this gap, the U.S. Department of Agriculture provides federally funded meals through the Summer Food Service Program. This program provides free, nutritious summer meals to children at approved sites in areas with high concentrations of low-income children.


“We are looking for summer meal champions to make a real difference in children’s lives,” said Brigitta Bly, program specialist with South Dakota’s Child and Adult Nutrition Services. “Local organizations play a critical role in their communities because they have a clear understanding of the unique needs in their area.”


Organizations interested in reviewing sponsor responsibilities and that would like to serve meals during summer 2022 are invited to use the SFSP pre-screen tool at Please complete this questionnaire by Feb. 23. Once eligibility is determined, department staff will contact sponsors with more information.

To learn more about serving as a sponsor or site, call Child and Adult Nutrition Services at 605-773-3413. For more information, go to


The Summer Food Service Program is available at no charge for children ages 0-18 and to persons with disabilities over age 18, who participate in school programs for people who are mentally or physically disabled.


USDA Nondiscrimination Statement

In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, religious creed, disability, age, political beliefs or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA.


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.


To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD-3027) found online at and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call 866-632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by:


(1)         mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture

Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights

1400 Independence Avenue, SW

Washington, D.C. 20250-9410


(2)          fax: 202-690-7442; or


(3)          email:


This institution is an equal opportunity provider.