January 28, 2016

Bread for the World Welcomes Major Child Nutrition Initiatives

Every five years, Congress must reauthorize domestic child nutrition programs. Photo: Joe Molieri / Bread for the World

Washington, D.C.– Bread for the World applauds the new initiatives announced yesterday by the White House to combat child hunger in the U.S. The initiatives include a pilot program to streamline the school meal application process, and a proposal to permanently expand the summer electronic benefit transfer (EBT) program.

“Bread for the World applauds the White House’s continued leadership in addressing child hunger,” said Rev. David Beckmann, president of Bread for the World. “The proposals announced yesterday would help connect more hungry children with the healthy meals they need year-round.”

The pilot program is intended to make the school meal application process more efficient and reduce paperwork by using Medicaid data to certify children for free and reduced-price school meals.

The president’s budget request for 2017 will propose a permanent expansion of the summer EBT program. This program provides an EBT card to families in hard-to-reach areas to purchase groceries during summer months if their children receive free or reduced-price school meals.                                                                           

Summer EBT pilot projects have reduced the most severe forms of child food insecurity by up to one-third.

The proposals were officially announced at “A White House Conversation on Child Hunger in America.” The summit brought together government officials, scholars, faith leaders, and recipients of food assistance to discuss ways to reduce hunger and poverty.

In the U.S., one in five children lives at risk of hunger. For every six low-income children who receive a school lunch, only about half also get a school breakfast. Only one also gets a meal during the summer months.

The bipartisan child nutrition reauthorization bill, passed by the Senate Agriculture Committee last week, would take key steps to make summer EBT permanently available in some areas. Yesterday’s proposals build on those improvements and direct additional funds to allow nationwide expansion of summer EBT over the next ten years.

“Bread for the World calls on Congress to fund these proposals in upcoming budget negotiations, and to pass a reauthorization bill that strengthens child nutrition programs,” added Beckmann.

from our Resource Library

For Education

  • The Nourishing Effect

    Hunger and food insecurity add at least $160 billion a year to U.S. healthcare costs.

  • Mass Incarceration: A Major Cause of Hunger

    Mass incarceration has far-reaching effects in the United States. It poses a significant barrier to ending U.S. hunger and poverty by 2030—a goal the United States adopted in 2015. But the connection is not always obvious.

  • Advancing Nutrition through Food Aid Reform

    The United States has long been a global leader in responding to humanitarian emergencies. Food assistance that includes nutritious food for pregnant women and young children is both a life-and-death matter for individuals and an economic imperative for countries.

For Faith

  • Unity Declaration on Racism and Poverty

    A diverse body of Christian leaders calls on the churches and Congress to focus on the integral connection.

    Dear Members of Congress,

    As the president and Congress are preparing their plans for this year, almost 100 church leaders—from all the families of U.S. Christianity—are...

  • In Times Like These … A Pan-African Christian Devotional for Public Policy Engagement

    This devotional guide invites deepened relationship with and among Pan-Af­rican people and elected leaders in the mission to end hunger and poverty.

  • Sermon by David Beckmann at Duke University Chapel

    Remarks delivered October 1, 2017 at Duke University Chapel in Chapel Hill in North Carolina.

    Thank you for inviting me to preach here at Duke University Chapel. And I especially want to thank the Bread for the World members who have come this morning.

    Bruce Puckett urged...

For Advocacy

  • Grassroots Advocacy Toolkit

    A set of how-to sheets for carrying out advocacy and fact sheets on the current issues Bread for the World is working on.

    For new and current Bread grassroots hunger activists.

    Ideal as a starter toolkit for new Bread activists or as a set of updates for current activists.


  • Sentencing Reform and Corrections Act of 2017

    Unnecessarily long prison sentences, combined with the lack of rehabilitative programs for people in prison, exacerbate hunger, poverty, and existing inequalities.

    Overly harsh mandatory minimum prison sentences have contributed to the rapid increase of our country’s prison population. The...

  • Health Care Is a Hunger Issue

    Learn more about the principles that Bread for the World supports regarding health reform.


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