Michigan approved to begin food program for children following school closures

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Michigan has gained federal approval to start a program that provides nutritious food for children affected by recent school closures.

It’s the first state in the country to receive this approval.

The Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer Program, or P-EBT, provides temporary funding to address emergency food needs for families affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

Benefits will go to Michigan families with students aged 5-18 who are enrolled in the Michigan Department of Education program for students eligible for free or reduced-price school meals.

The program will reach approximately 895,000 students.

For eligible families not currently receiving food assistance benefits, they will receive a pre-loaded Electronic Benefits Transaction (EBT) card, which will be issued under the name of the oldest student in the household.

EBT benefit amounts will be no less than the total amount of free or reduced-cost school lunch benefits. The benefits will include $193.80 per eligible student to cover the months of March and April, plus an additional $182.40 per student to cover May and June.

The benefits will also help in aiding local school districts provide meals to children at more than 2,000 stationary locations and nearly 700 mobile sites throughout Michigan.

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