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How EBT Helps Create a Hunger Free Summer

For Hunger Free Summer, we want to highlight the Summer Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Program. The Summer EBT programs offers the opportunity to reduce summer hunger by providing additional resources to purchase food during the summer months for families whose children are certified to receive free or reduced-price school meals during the school year. Summer EBT was established in December 2022 as part of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2023, and will begin in Tennessee this Summer! The Tennessee Department of Human Services and the Tennessee Department of Education will issue Summer EBT benefits through the state’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) EBT card system to households with eligible children. In general, school children are eligible for benefits if they would have received free or reduced-price meals at their schools through the National School Lunch Program (NSLP). Summer EBT is a complement to the Summer Nutrition Programs which support summer meal programs in low-income communities that are typically combined with educational, enrichment, and recreational activities. These programs can help reduce food insecurity for low-income families, particularly in rural or other areas with limited access to summer meals.

In Tennessee, each eligible child will receive a benefit amount of $120. Tennessee estimates that it will issue $80.5 million to approximately 670,800 school children during the 2023 covered summer period.

If you or someone you know is interested in learning more about Summer EBT, visit the TN Department of Human Services website at

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