Dear Friends,

The RACE is still on! The 25th Annual VIRTUAL Race Against Hunger 5K Run/Walk ENDS on Monday, April 26th, #HungerFighters can run/walk along a certified 5K route mapped out by Bryn Mawr Racing along Kelly Drive or in their own communities. Tell your friends and family that they still have time to help our neighbors fight hunger. REGISTRATION ENDS Sunday, April 25th. Buy Your Race Ticket Today!

If you aren’t able to walk or run this year, please consider Making a Donation. Proceeds of the Race Against Hunger support the work of the Coalition as well as food pantries, soup kitchens and anti-hunger organizations in the region. 

A HUGE thank you to The Specter Family Foundation, The Vogt Foundation, Gateway Health, Wawa Foundation, Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr, the employees of The Graham Company, and one anonymous donor (you know who you are)!

Visit www.phillyhungerrace.com to register or make a donation!

 

SNAP Hotline

Our SNAP Hotline continues to operate Monday – Thursday from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm and on Friday from 9:00 am to 4 pm at 215-430-0556.  

Here is the City of Philadelphia list of COVID-19 food distribution sites locations across Philadelphia for student, senior and outdoor food pick up sites.  

Here is a listing (phone numbers and addresses) of all Philadelphia County Assistance offices. Note, however, when calling it is often quicker to contact the Customer Service Center at 215-560-7226 (Philadelphia) or 877-395-8930 (statewide).

 

Policy and Advocacy

Lots of updates to share this week! At the federal level - In response to the dramatic increases in the number of households with children experiencing hunger as a result of the pandemic, earlier this week the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued a series of nationwide waivers extension through the 2021–2022 school year will have a tremendous impact on combating childhood hunger. These waivers will enable schools and childcare providers to maintain access to nutritious meals for children. The waivers include: 

  • Seamless Summer Option, allowing schools to provide meals that meet the school breakfast and lunch nutrition standards and receive the Summer Food Service Program reimbursement rate. This also allows schools to serve free meals to all children, regardless of location; 
  • Area Eligibility, which allows meals to be provided in areas that do not meet the usual 50 percent area eligibility threshold and waives area eligibility for family childcare homes;  
  • Meal Pattern Flexibility, which allows for flexibility in meeting the meal pattern requirements in specific situations; 
  • Non-Congregate, which allows meals to be served and eaten outside of group settings;
  • Meal Service Times, which allows service outside of standard mealtimes; and
  • Parent/Guardian Pick Up, which allows a parent or guardian to pick up meals for children.

By extending these waivers now, USDA is providing schools and childcare providers both certainty about resources and the planning time they need to effectively serve children nutritious meals no matter what the school or preschool days look like next year. We applaud USDA for prioritizing the health and learning needs of children, easing the administrative burden and budget pressure upon schools and childcare providers, and of course supporting parents and our overall economic recovery. 

Here in PA– We are grateful to the Pennsylvania Department of Health Bureau of WIC for taking a valuable option made possible by the American Rescue Plan. PA WIC will increase the funds families receive to purchase fruits and vegetables with their WIC benefits to $35 per month (up from $9 for children and $11 for mothers). This ARP change, which both expands access to fresh local produce and encourages healthier eating, is available for a maximum of four months and will be effective in PA from June – September 2021.

Another item on the WIC front – Every year, the state evaluates its WIC plan and provides opportunity for public comment. Through our partnership with Just Harvest, we are hosting two webinars next week to help parents understand how they can submit comments to the PA WIC State plan, as well as explain what WIC policies the state controls (as opposed to those set at federal level). The webinars will be the same, but we are offering them at two times to accommodate different schedules. Please spread the word! This is a great time for current and former WIC participants to share their experience and tell PA officials how to improve the program! They can register by clicking on the date and time below that works for their schedule (both sessions will be the same):

·  Tuesday April 27th at 6 pm   

·  Wednesday April 28th at 3pm

 

Food Pantry and Soup Kitchens

Our partner Nutritional Development Services (NDS) will be hosting another Farmers to Family meal distribution at Holy Innocents Parish on Saturday 4/24. They will be offering 7 days of breakfast and lunch meal boxes for children who are virtually learning for ages 2-18  and USDA meal boxes that have milk, meats, cheeses and vegetables. Individuals can come for just the USDA family box and families may receive both student meals and USDA box. 

 

WHAT CAN YOU DO?  

We strive to build a community where all people have the food they need to lead healthy lives. Hunger is preventable. Thank you for your continued support of our work! 

The Coalition Against Hunger Team 

 

Greater Philadelphia Coalition Against Hunger
123 Chestnut Street Suite 401 | Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19106
215-430-0555 | info@hungercoalition.org

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