The Michigan Department of Education (MDE) passes the 10 Cents a Meal for Michigan’s Kids & Farms program so that kids will have access to a nutritious meal.
Ypsilanti Public Schools has been awarded a $15,000 grant for the 2020-21 school year.
Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, food insecurity has been at an all-time high, and with children being out of school, it has become difficult for them to find affordable, nutritious meals. The Michigan Department of Education chose their 10 Cents a Meal for Michigan’s Kids & Farms grantees for 2020-2021, allowing Michigan’s kids to be able to access a nutritious diet daily.
The 10 Cents A Meal for Michigan's Kids & Farms is a state-funded match incentive funding up to 10 cents per meal to purchase and serve Michigan-grown fruits, vegetables, and legumes.
“The 10 Cents a Meal program is a competitive, matching grant for all school districts and childcare centers that are a part of the USDA child nutrition programs of Extended Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) during the school year, National School Lunch Program (NSLP) or the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP),” Nathan Medina, Policy Specialist, said.
Currently, Michigan’s state budget is very large, with the education budget being one of the largest budgets that the government passes yearly. However, despite the large budget, it is difficult for programs to really take off without spreading awareness.
“Knowing that it exists and it exists statewide is going to be essential in getting the word out and allowing it to expand in an equitable fashion. Presently, Washtenaw County has a wealth of applicants and grantees. So, spreading awareness and getting your school district to apply or your early childhood development center is going to be essential,” says Medina.
How it works
Schools and centers:
Purchase local produce—at least twice the amount of the grant award.
Serve it in school or center meals that qualify for USDA reimbursable meals.
Promote the Michigan produce and provide some educational components about local agriculture and products.
Submit receipts and invoices on a monthly basis.
Complete 3-4 surveys.
A guide to the application process can be found on Ten Cents Michigan. Community members can also support local schools and early childhood education centers in success. Applicants can include the ways in which community members will assist them in their grant applications.