DENVER (KDVR) – A much-needed public service is returning this week when participating Denver Public Schools begin offering children, aged 18 and under, breakfast and lunches free of charge.

During the summer months when schools close down, some children struggle to maintain a proper nutritional intake, partially as a result of meal costs being transferred to their parents. That’s where the Food and Nutrition Services at DPS steps in, to fill the void.

“We are ecstatic to be able to provide nutritious meals to our community during the summer months,” said Theresa Hafner, Executive Director of Food and Nutrition Services at Denver Public Schools. “This program helps children get the nutrition they need for breakfast and lunch all summer long.” 

Hunger in Colorado

According to Feeding America, 566,440 people are facing hunger in the state. What elevates this problem to a more concerning level is that 147,120 of those are reportedly children.

Couple that statistic with another that details the drop in the number of children that receive free or reduced-cost lunch during the year, to those who receive it in the summer, which is from 18 million to 3 million, and one can see how impactful this crisis is.

To battle this widespread hunger, the federally-funded Summer Food Service Program will be offered at around 47 schools, or one-third of DPS school campuses, with those typically falling in neighborhoods that carry a higher concentration of poverty.

Additionally, adults are eligible to purchase these meals with breakfast costing $3 and lunch costing $4.50.

Consult the full summer calendar that outlines when each school will offer breakfast and lunch. Listed below are the schools that will be participating across the city.

Denver Public Schools Free Summer Meal participants

  • Abraham Lincoln ‘
  • Amesse
  • Barnum
  • Beach Court
  • Bruce Randolph
  • Campus 28
  • Castro
  • Cheltenham
  • Colfax
  • DCIS at Baker
  • DCIS at Fairmont
  • Denver Green
  • Denver School of Arts
  • DSST Cole
  • Eagleton
  • Evie Dennis
  • Fairview
  • Farrell B Howell
  • Grant Ranch
  • Green Valley Ranch
  • Harrington
  • Highline Academy
  • John F. Kennedy
  • Johnson
  • Kepner
  • Marrama
  • Munroe
  • Newlon
  • North
  • Northfield
  • Oakland
  • Palmer
  • Place Bridge
  • Sandoval
  • Schmitt
  • Shoemaker
  • Southmoor
  • Stedman
  • Swigert
  • Thomas Jefferson
  • University Park
  • University Prep – Steele
  • Valdez
  • Waller
  • Westerley Creek
  • Whittier
  • Willow