Afterschool Nutrition Programs served 1.4 million children in October 2019, will likely need more support to meet growing need during the pandemic

The Food Research & Action Center (FRAC) recently published a report detailing data on participation in the Afterschool Nutrition Programs in October 2019 versus in October 2018. Although participation in afterschool meals increased by 86,900 children from October 2018 to October 2019, far fewer children participate in Afterschool Nutrition Programs compared to the National School Lunch Program (NSLP). FRAC estimates that for every 100 low-income children participating in NSLP in October 2019, only 6.5 children received afterschool suppers. Still, nationally over 1.4 million children participated in the Afterschool Nutrition Programs in October 2019 and this may be higher in 2020 given the increase in out-of-school-time hours associated with limited in-person education. USDA waivers are currently allowing more flexibility to afterschool programs (e.g., snacks and suppers may be eaten offsite, additional meal sites are allowed, and enrichment activity requirements are eased), which FRAC authors propose be sustained and expanded #foodsecurity #education

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