Contact: Elizabeth Gartman, Communications Manager,, 630-443-6910 ext. 142

Northern Illinois Food Bank’s award-winning Summer Food Service Program to provide meals for children at risk of hunger

(Geneva, Ill. – June 2, 2017) Northern Illinois Food Bank today announces its participation in the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP). The Summer Food Service Program is designed to provide breakfast, lunch, or snacks to children in at-risk areas during the summer months when children do not have access to free or reduced-price lunches at school. Summer meal sites will open on a rolling basis starting Monday, June 5 and run through mid-August.

Under SFSP federal guidelines, feeding sites sponsored by Northern Illinois Food Bank provide meals to children ages 18 years and under, and to persons over age 18 enrolled in state-approved educational programs for the mentally or physically disabled across Northern Illinois. More than 285,000 free summer meals were made available to children in need last year.

In April, the USDA named Northern Illinois Food Bank one of the nation’s top 10 leading Summer Meal Program sponsors with its “Turnip the Beet” award, dedicated to recognizing summer meal programs with the highest quality food. The Food Bank was ranked as one of 10 Gold awardees, and was the only awardee in Illinois. According to the USDA’s website, awardees demonstrated “excellence in areas such as providing fresh fruit daily; conducting taste tests with the children (and incorporating the feedback into the menus); serving a variety of whole grains and offering nutrition education activities along with the meals.”

Days and hours of individual sites vary. For further information about Northern Illinois Food Bank’s Summer Meal program, contact Jessica Willis at 630-443-6910 or visit

The U.S Department of Agriculture prohibits discrimination against its customers, employees, and applicants for employment on the bases of race, color, national origin, age, disability, sex, gender identity, religion, reprisal, and where applicable, political beliefs, marital status, familial or parental status, sexual orientation, or all or part of an individual’s income is derived from any public assistance program, or protected genetic information in employment or in any program or activity conducted or funded by the Department. (Not all prohibited bases will apply to all programs and/or employment activities.)

If you wish to file a Civil Rights program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, found online at, or at any USDA office, or call (866) 632-9992 to request the form. You may also write a letter containing all of the information requested in the form. Send your completed complaint form or letter to us by mail at U.S. Department of Agriculture, Director, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20250-9410, by fax (202) 690-7442 or email at

Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339; or (800) 845-6136 (Spanish). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

About Northern Illinois Food Bank
Northern Illinois Food Bank leads the Northern Illinois community in solving hunger by providing nutritious meals to those in need through innovative programs and partnerships. Since 1983, food manufacturers, local grocers, corporations, foundations, and individuals have come together to donate food and funds, and evaluate and repack food for distribution to 800 community food pantries and feeding programs serving more than 71,500 hungry neighbors each week across 13 counties. That commitment provided 62.5 million meals to those in need in FY16. Northern Illinois Food Bank has received a 4-Star rating from Charity Navigator for 13 consecutive years. Find out how you can Volunteer, Donate and Get Involved at, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram. Northern Illinois Food Bank is a member of Feeding America.