Pandemic food assistance program for children and students receives influx during summer months, Massachusetts officials say

Massachusetts has received federal approval to provide the Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer (P-EBT) summer, which will provide food assistance to approximately 400,000 school-aged children and 109,000 children under the age of six. years who receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, the state said. Transitional Assistance Department.

The P-EBT, a federal program, was created during the pandemic to address increased food insecurity among children and students who would normally receive school or daycare meals.

According to Friday’s announcement, federal approval of P-EBT over the summer will bring $200 million in federal funds to Massachusetts.

“Households with children have historically experienced higher food insecurity in the summer when children come home from school,” said Health and Human Services Secretary Marylou Sudders. “The extension of P-EBT through August and the continuation of SNAP emergency allocations and increased WIC vouchers for fruits and vegetables, in addition to our extensive Summer Eats meal sites, represent the continued commitment administration to tackle child hunger across the Commonwealth.”

The Department of Transitional Assistance said eligible children will receive $391 in P-EBT in two installments over the summer, with K-12 students beginning to receive the money on July 3 and July 3. August and those with children under 6 receiving the cash on July 25 and August 25.

All K-12 students who have received P-EBT in the past will be eligible for Summer P-EBT.

Massachusetts first launched its P-EBT program in April 2020 when schools closed during the pandemic. Massachusetts was the first state to receive approval to continue P-EBT through the 2020-2021 school year. In March 2021, the program was extended to provide P-EBT benefits to children in day care.

“Over the past two years, P-EBT has been a vital tool in providing children and families with the financial power to purchase foods that meet the cultural and nutritional needs of their homes. It also continues to play an important role as an economic stabilizer, providing an influx of federal dollars into the state’s economy, supporting our grocery stores, convenience stores, local farms and other food retailers,” said Mary Sheehan, Commissioner by Interim Department of Transitional Assistance. . “DTA is excited to provide these essential benefits again this summer in conjunction with DESE and local school districts.”

To check eligibility and apply online, visit MassDOT.gov.

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