Sumter School District's Seamless Summer provides meals for children


The Seamless Summer Option, Summer Feeding Program, allows school food authorities to provide free, nutritious meals and snacks to children 18 years of age or younger during summer vacation periods. A person 19 years of age and over with a mental or physical disability as determined by a state or local educational agency and who participates during the school year in a public or private nonprofit school program may participate in the program.

The program is administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

According to the South Carolina Department of Education, "During the school year, many children receive a free and reduced-price breakfast and lunch through the School Breakfast and National School Lunch Program. When schools let out, many children are at risk of going hungry. Lack of nutrition during the summer months may set up a cycle for poor performance once school begins and make children more prone to illnesses and other health issues. The Summer Food Service Program and the Seamless Summer Option are designed to fill that nutrition gap and provide children with the nutritious meals they need and deserve. They are federally funded programs that provide free meals to school-aged children, 18 years old or younger, living in an area-eligible location."

Participating sites may choose either breakfast and lunch, breakfast and a snack, or lunch and a snack per day, per child per site. Sites may be a school, church, recreation center, camp, playground and community park.

Dates of operation

The Summer Feeding Program will operate from Monday, June 3, 2024, through Thursday, July 18, 2024.

Types of meals provided

- Breakfast meals consist of one serving of fluid 1% or nonfat milk, one serving of a vegetable or fruit or full-strength juice and one serving of grain or bread.

- Hot or cold lunch meals consist of one serving of fluid 1% or nonfat milk, one serving grain, one serving meat/meat alternate, one serving of fruit and one serving of vegetable.

- Snack meals consist of two food items from two different food components. Food components are 1% or nonfat milk, vegetable or fruit, grain and meat/meat alternate.

All meals must be consumed on-site, with the exception of whole fruits or closed packaged grain products.

According to the department, "There are many organizations in South Carolina that are providing free healthy meals to children throughout the summer months. Please use one or more of the following resources to find a location near you: locate a site on the USDA Summer Meals Map at, call 1-866-3-HUNGRY (348-6479) or text 'FOOD' to 304-304."