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Summer EBT Program To Help Around 644,000 Kids

The Summer EBT Program in Tennessee is expected to help around 644,000 kids and provide much-needed food assistance.

January 30, 2024

One in eight Tennesseans experiencing hunger is a child. The state is planning to tackle hunger this summer by opting into the new summer Electronic Benefits Transfer program.

Nearly $77 Million will be provided to provide food assistance to 644,000 low-income students across the state. The children receiving the free or reduced free lunch in school will be getting $40 a month which means there’ll be a total of $120 in food benefits during summers.

Tennessee state has time until February 15 to submit its plan for the program to the USDA for approval.

Anderson explains, “When school’s out, they lose access to those school meals again. So, summer EBT is a great resource for families to be able to have some extra money to support them during the summertime and connect kids to meals again”.

Anderson noted that during the COVID public health emergency, families with children eligible for free or reduced-price school meals received additional support through Pandemic EBT. This funding helped them afford groceries during school closures and summer vacations. The U.S. Department of Agriculture is making the Summer EBT a permanent program starting this summer, continuing to provide essential food assistance.

One challenge for Tennessee will be to secure funding to cover the administrative costs of the Summer EBT Program. The state will also have to identify kids who are not certified for school meals.

Anderson also expressed her gratitude to the Department of Education and the Department of Human Services for opting for the Summer EBT Program. She also revealed that nearly 500 people sent letters to officials urging them to adopt the summer EBT Program.

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Smith Danielle. “Summer EBT food program estimated to help 644,000 kids”. Public News Service, January 30, 2024,
Summer EBT food program estimated to help 644 000 kids / Public News Service

Last Updated: September 20, 2021