FRAC’s Summer Food Mapper identifies areas that qualify as Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) or Seamless Summer Option (SSO) sites through Census data. One way to qualify a SFSP or SSO site is to show that 50 percent or more of the children in the area are eligible for free or reduced-price school meals. School data is used most often to document that a site is in a low-income area, but Census data also can be used. Census data is especially useful for qualifying sites in rural areas or where pockets of poverty exist within affluent areas.
To determine the eligibility of a site for SFSP or SSO:
1. Access your state map using the map below:
2. Once you have found your state’s map, click on the SEARCH field on the top left-hand side of the screen.
3. Enter the address of the proposed site in the pop-up window. Then click on the search button in the pop-up window below the address.
4. The mapper will show the address on the map with a blue location pin. Sites in eligible or maybe eligible areas will appear in either a red or blue area on the map.
ELIGIBLE SITES are in red areas. These are areas where over 50 percent of the children in the census blocks are eligible for free or reduced-price school meals based on census data.
MAYBE SITES are in blue areas. Between 40 and 49 percent of the children in the light blue Census blocks are eligible for free or reduced-price school meals. USDA’s guidance allows these blocks to qualify if adjacent block groups (a maximum of three) averaged together have 50 percent of more of the children eligible for free or reduced-price school meals. FRAC provides a calculator to determine whether these sites may be eligible. State child nutrition agencies are responsible for conducting the averaging and determining eligibility.
NOT ELIGIBLE SITES will be shown in areas with no background color. These sites may be eligible according to school data, but they do not meet the requirements for qualifying through Census data.
5. Clicking on the blue location pin will provide a pop-up box with additional information about the area, including the census block and tract numbers. The box will also show the percentage of children between 0-18 and 0-13 that are eligible to participate. Summer sites can qualify using either percentage. The Census block group number often is required by the state agency to qualify the site.
6. If your location is in a MAYBE area (blue), use FRAC’s Mapping Tool Calculator to determine eligibility in Census Block Groups that are between 40 and 49 percent.
For more information or questions about the Summer Food Mapper, contact Clarissa Hayes, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Download the Mapper instructions (MSWord document).