ATLANTA (AP) — The U.S. Department of Agriculture is offering Georgia parents free summer lunches for their children.

Parents should text the word “FoodGA” to 877-877 and enter their address when prompted. The system will send information on the three nearest locations. Parents can also call 2-1-1, the United Way’s helpline, for site locations.

Many summer meals sites also offer fun learning and recreational activities. Meals are free to children ages 18 and younger, and food served follows USDA nutrition guidelines. Sites include schools, churches, community centers and other places safe for children.

Officials say nearly 60 percent of children enrolled in Georgia public schools are eligible for free or reduced lunch, but only 15 percent of them participate in summer meal programs, meaning many often go hungry during the season


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