DETROIT, July 17, 2015 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- United Way for Southeastern Michigan is partnering with community organizations to offer healthy food to children at no cost until the end of the summer at Meet Up and Eat Up™ (MUEU) sites through the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP), operated by the Michigan Department of Education. The MUEU initiative is part of a collaborative movement to ensure that every child has three nutritious meals a day all year.
Meet Up and Eat Up™ is part of a statewide initiative to end childhood hunger through public, private and nonprofit partnerships. Meals are available at 650 sites throughout Southeastern Michigan. The City of Detroit alone has more than 300 sites. The Detroit Recreation Department, one of the sponsors of Meet Up and Eat Up, is home to more than 40 of those sites.
"We are proud to represent the City of Detroit by providing healthy meals to the young people in our community and to partner with United Way in the Michigan No Kid Hungry Initiative," said Alicia C. Bradford, Director, Detroit Parks and Recreation Department. "We know that a well-balanced meal provides fuel for our youth to excel both mentally and physically," she stated.
Children 18-years-old and younger may participate at any MUEU summer site. Locations include schools, parks, libraries and churches, as well as recreation centers. There is no income requirement, no charge and no application process. All kids are welcome!
Healthy food is not the only thing provided. Site activities include arts and crafts, tutoring, mentoring, nutrition education, music, sports and other creative activities in safe gathering spaces for adults and children.
"The Detroit Lions know that food insecurity doesn't take a summer vacation," said Lions Director of Community Relations Rob Wooley. "That's why we are proud to team up with United Way for Southeastern Michigan to support Meet Up and Eat Up™. It's an opportunity to help provide an important source of nutritious food for kids and teens as well as keep them healthy and active during the summer."
To find the most conveniently-located site, call 2-1-1 or text FOOD to 877-877 or for more information about Michigan No Kid Hungry and Meet Up Eat Up™,visit www.liveunitedsem.org/2015mueu.
In Greater Detroit, more than 300,000 kids qualify for free or reduced-price lunches, but fewer than 16% of those children are eating those lunches at a MUEU summer food site when school is not in session, primarily because of lack of awareness about the program. United Way is working hard to increase participation this summer so no child goes hungry during the break from school.
About United Way for Southeastern Michigan
United Way for Southeastern Michigan mobilizes the caring power of Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties to improve lives in measurable and lasting ways throughout the region. The organization is led by a diverse group of volunteers from business, labor, government, human services, education and the community. United Way provides opportunities to invest in the metropolitan Detroit community through its annual Campaign and is a leader in convening partners to impact local residents each year by increasing economic self-sufficiency, protecting children and youth at risk, strengthening families, empowering neighborhoods and communities, and promoting health and wellness. Additional information is available at www.liveunitedsem.org.
SOURCE United Way for Southeastern Michigan