Chickasaw Nation Governor Bill Anoatubby recently announced an innovative summer nutrition program offered by the Chickasaw Nation. Families with children who receive free or reduced-price school meals are eligible for the program.
Each participating family will receive either $30 or $60 per month per child on an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card. The EBT card may be used like a debit card at local grocery stores to purchase nutritious foods.
Any child meeting the criteria is eligible, officials said.
Summer EBT for children program began May 15, serving almost 11,000 school-aged children in 11 counties of the Chickasaw Nation; 1,117 are Chickasaw children.
The Chickasaw Nation worked with 57 local school districts to distribute and verify applications. All students from these districts who receive free or reduced-price lunches at school automatically qualify.
The Chickasaw Nation has offered the program for three years. Participation continues to increase annually.
In 2012, about 5,000 students were served and the following year that number increased to about 8,000.
In order to offer the program to more children, the Chickasaw Nation expanded from 8 to 11 counties, including an expansion from 41 to 57 school districts.
For more information, contact Chickasaw Nation Nutrition Services at (844) 256-3467 or visit www.chickasaw.net.