In 2020, 11.7 million children lived in food-insecure homes. According to No Kid Hungry, a national campaign to end childhood hunger in the United States, summertime exacerbates that issue for children who rely on school meals.
To help reduce the number of children who are at risk of going without food, No Kid Hungry is partnering on an awareness campaign with author, restaurateur and cooking personality Ayesha Curry, rapper Big Freedia, and chef Lorena Garcia, who will be the campaign ambassadors.
“As a mom of three, it’s hard to fathom the fact that millions of kids aren’t getting the necessary food they need to thrive,” Curry said in a press release. “We all have a role to play when it comes to ending childhood hunger, which is why we must bring our villages together and work on the ground to make a real impact. I’m so proud to partner with No Kid Hungry through our Eat. Learn. Play. Foundation to spread the word about our critical programs that ensure all kids have access to food this summer, in Oakland and across the country.”
The awareness campaign aims to help families find free meals for their kids and teens this summer via a bilingual text service. Parents or caregivers can text “FOOD” or “COMIDA” to 304-304 and they’ll be sent information on where they can find free meals in their neighborhood. You can also go to or visit NoKidHungry.org/Help for more information and to spread the word about this initiative.
“As a Chef, I know exactly how food and nutrition are tied to success and happiness,” Garcia said. “Every kid deserves to have a full stomach – no matter what time of year it is. I am proud to partner with No Kid Hungry to promote this critical service so more parents and caregivers, including Spanish-speaking families, know where they can access nutritious meals for their kids while school is out.”
With inflation taking its toll and shooting gas and food prices up, as well as food shortages, it may be near impossible for many low income households to provide their kids with three square meals a day throughout the summer. Not to mention the child nutrition waiver expired in June, meaning kids could be missing out on about 95 million meals during the summer.
Children shouldn’t have to function on empty stomachs during what should be one of the most enjoyable times of the year for them.
“I’ve seen No Kid Hungry’s work and the impact of summer meals sites firsthand in my hometown of New Orleans,” Big Freedia added. “Kids need full stomachs to grow properly and to focus on being kids. Summer meals give them the opportunity to do just that.”