TJC Story Blog

Feb 2022

Tennessee Children Need Nutritious Food in the Summer

 Families across Tennessee report difficulty feeding children without access to P-EBT, or free school meals, during the summer. A mother from Memphis, TN shared her family’s experience with nutrition assistance programs during the pandemic. She has a 10-year-old boy and a 15-year-old boy who both have an auto immune disease. It has been difficult to afford and feed healthy food to her children, especially during summer, while trying to keep them safe from COVID-19. When school lets out for summer vacation, not all children and families look forward to summer. Children who participate in free school meals lose access to these nutrition meals and parents who work at low-paying jobs struggle with childcare and food costs. This Memphis family participates in SNAP, but the benefits do not cover the full cost of keeping her children fed with nutritious meals. She expressed concern about finding a way to feed her children this summer as the COVID-19 crisis continues. Families in Tennessee still need access to food assistance as the pandemic evolves. Extending summer P-EBT would provide families with security during the summer and put healthier food directly in the bellies of Tennessee children. To support extended summer P-EBT for Tennesseans, ask your legislators to pass Build Back Better.