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The NYC Department Of Ed Is Offering Free Meals for Families in NYC

The NYC Department Of Ed Is Offering Free Meals for Families in NYC

Three free meals are available per day from the NYC Department of Education at various locations throughout the city for any New Yorker who needs them.


Updated Sept. 14: NYC's grab-and-go free meal program that has persisted for families throughout the pandemic will remain in place at certain schools in high-need areas, operating after classes, according to The City. Students attending classes in person will receive grab-and-go meals and will eat them in their classroom and those learning remotely will be able to access meals at the schools closest to them between 9am-12pm. Adults will have access to breakfast and lunch between 3-5pm.

The new program is set to launch on Monday, Sept. 21, when classes begin in person and the schools that will participate have not yet been announced. Approximately 200 schools will be participating.

School employees have distributed approximately 60 million meals at 400 locations since later March when the program began, according to Joshua Goodman, a spokesperson for the city's sanitation department, the agency in charge of the program. 

Here are some resources for finding free food near you:

NYC Food Delivery Assistance

New York City is also providing assistance to New Yorkers during the COVID-19 crisis by delivering meals to those who cannot access food themselves



This service is available for households that meet the following criteria: 

  • No one in the household can go out to get food because they are at increased medical risk or are homebound.
  • There are no neighbors or family members who can go out and get food for you.
  • You do not already receive meal assistance from other providers (including Meals on Wheels or God's Love We Deliver).
  • You are unable to afford a meal delivery or grocery delivery service.

Emergency Food Assistance in NYC 

To find the nearest food pantries and community kitchens, call the Emergency Food Hotline at 866-888-8777 or call 311. You can also find locations offering free meals near you using the Get Food NYC map.


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Melissa Wickes

Author: Melissa Wickes, a graduate of Binghamton University and the NYU Summer Publishing Institute, is the production editor for NYMetroParents. She's written hundreds of articles to help New York parents make better decisions for their families. When she's not writing, you can find her eating pasta, playing guitar, or watching reality TV. See More

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