Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP)
...provides funding to serve nutritious meals to children enrolled in child development centers and homes and before and after care programs. CACFP promotes school-readiness by providing nutritious meals - programs may serve up to two meals and one snack per day - that aid childrenís cognitive and physical development. Studies show that CACFP meals are nutritionally superior to those served to children in child care settings that donít participate in the program. The program can also supplement the budgets of low-income families and child development providers.
Whatís happening with CACFP in D.C.?
Healthy Tots Act and CACFP
With the passing of the Healthy Tots Act in October 2014, child development centers and child care homes that serve 50 percent or more low-income children in the District are now required to participate in the federal Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP), unless they are granted an exemption from OSSE.
Some highlights of the Healthy Tots Act that affect CACFP include:
- Support so that all eligible centers and homes can participate in CACFP and get federal funding for healthy meals.
- Additional funding for facilities participating in CACFP to help centers adopt higher nutritional standards, including serving local produce (25 cents per child per day in addition to the federal reimbursement).
- Local funding for child care facilities participating in CACFP to serve three meals (CACFP provides funding for two meals so local funding will cover the third).
The Act also provides opportunities to apply for competitive grants, which can help child development facilities participating in CACFP to support physical activity, nutrition, gardens, natural play areas, and farm-to-preschool programs.
Child Development Homes participating in CACFP receive $300 per year, to help pay for licensing and renewal costs.
D.C. Hunger Solutions can help by:
- giving presentations to your networks about the benefits of and how to participate in CACFP and the DC Healthy Tots Act;
- providing outreach materials and nutrition education resources to inform your network about CACFP;
- assisting you in completing the application to enroll in CACFP.
Help us spread the word:
- Distribute this summary of Healthy Tots Act of 2014 (pdf).
- Visit the Wellness and Nutrition Services Division section of the Office of the State Superintendent of Education website to learn more about CACFP in D.C.
- Contact us if your organization would be interested in enrolling in CACFP or joining the CACFP Collaborative.