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USDA provides free meals for students

by MACKENZI KLEMANN - mklemann@wabashplaindealer.com

Free meals for children up to 18 years of age will be available at nearly a dozen local sites this summer.

The meals are provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s summer food service program, which aims to fill the nutrition gap many students face while out of school.

The USDA says children who don’t eat breakfast and lunch “are more likely to be sick, absent or tardy, disruptive in class, inattentive” and receive lower test scores. The gap grows while children are out of school, as many low income children rely on schools for free or reduced price meals.

Parents who simply need help feeding their children hot meals during the work day are in luck, too, as there is no income requirement for children to participate.

Wabash County sites include:

The Access Youth Center, 74. W. Canal St., Wabash. Open for dinner from 3:45 to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, June 4 through July 27.

Wabash County YMCA, 500 S. Cass St., Wabash. Open for breakfast and lunch from 9-10 a.m. and 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, June 4 through July 27.

Living Faith Church, 242 S. Huntington St., Wabash. Open for lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, June 4 through July 27.

Wabash Fire Department Park, 1470 Vernon St., Wabash. Open for lunch from 12:50-1:10 p.m. Monday through Friday, June 4 through June 29.

Wabash Middle School, 150 Colerain St., Wabash. Open for breakfast and lunch from 7:45 to 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday through Friday, June 4 through July 27.

Wabash Alliance Church, 1200 N. Cass St., Wabash. Open for dinner from 5:50-6:25 p.m. Monday through Thursday, June 11-15.

O.J. Neighbours Elementary School, 1545 N. Wabash St., Wabash. Open for breakfast and lunch from 8-9 a.m. and 11 a.m. to noon Monday through Friday, June 4 through July 27.

Roann UMC, corner of Adams & Arnold St. Roann. Open for lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, June 4 through July 20.

LaFontaine United Methodist, 2 W. Kendall St., LaFontaine. Open for lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, June 4 through July 27.

Manchester Elementary School, 301 River Rd., North Manchester. Open for breakfast and lunch from 8 to 8:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. Monday through Saturday, June 4 through July 26.

Manchester Intermediate School, 20 W. Woodring Rd., Laketon. Open for lunch from 11 to 11:45 a.m. Monday through Friday, May 30 through August 8.

Manchester Jr. - Sr. High School, 1 Squire Dr., North Manchester. Open for breakfast and lunch from 8:30 to 9 a.m. and 11:45 a.m. to 12:45 p.m. Monday through Friday, May 30 through August 8.

*Note: Some sites may be closed for holidays. All dates and times provided by the USDA.