Close to 6 percent of District of Columbia residents participated in USDA's Summer Food Service Program in 2012

Close to 6 percent of District of Columbia residents participated in USDA's Summer Food Service Program in 2012

When school is not in session, USDA’s Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) provides free meals and snacks to children and teens at approved sites such as schools, churches, parks, community centers, and day camp programs. SFSP meals must meet Federal nutrition guidelines and are served in areas with high concentrations of low-income children. In July 2012, the percent of a State’s total population participating in SFSP ranged from 0.2 percent in Nevada to 1.9 percent in New Mexico and New York. That same year, 5.7 percent of the District of Columbia’s population participated in the program. Demographic factors help explain differences in program participation as a percentage of total population; higher SFSP participation rates could reflect a higher proportion of school-age children relative to total population, or a higher number of low-income children relative to the overall school-age population. Differences in availability and accessibility of SFSP sites also play an important role in the variability across States. This map is from ERS’s Food Environment Atlas.


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