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DC Central Kitchen Serves 70,000 Nutritious Meals to DC Kids and Families this Summer

Washington DC – August 2023 – DC Central Kitchen (DCCK) served a record number of summer meals in 2023 as it provided over 70,000 locally sourced, scratch-cooked free meals to food insecure children and families at summer camps, public pools, schools, and community centers this summer. Launched just as schools closed for summer break, the organization’s innovative summertime efforts ran from June 23rd to August 27th this year, providing breakfast, lunch, dinner, and healthy snacks through partnerships with youth-serving organizations and via its own two mobile meals trucks, which set up distribution sites in areas with significant food access gaps. 

“Summer meals are an essential part of our work to fight hunger. It is important for us to address the nutrition gap that can occur when schools close for the summer and to help alleviate the stress parents are facing with rising food costs and reduced benefits,” says DC Central Kitchen Director of Contract Meals and Nutrition Samantha Reilly. 

DC Central Kitchen delivered summer meals to high-impact partners across DC, including Little Lights Urban Ministries, Benning Courts Community Center, Carver Hall Community Center, Congress Park Community Center, Education Plus2, Frederick Douglass Community Center, Many Languages One Voice (MLOV), Sitar Arts Center, and numerous FRESHFARM Markets locations, including Anacostia Museum, Cesar Chavez Elementary, Kenilworth Rec Center, and East River Park Shopping Center on Minnesota Avenue. DCCK’s free meals helped DC kids take full advantage of these enrichment programs and allowed parents to reliably access good food for their families.  

The organization also built on a long-standing meal delivery and healthy cooking partnership with the  Washington Nationals Youth Baseball Academy by providing afternoon snacks and dinner at their four YBA PLAY program sites in Wards 5, 6, 7, and 8. Supporters of DCCK’s summer meals project included the DC Department of Parks and Recreation and long-time Washington Wizards star Bradley Beal, among other local foundations and donors. 

Visit dccentralkitchen.org for more on our summer feeding program and to learn about DC Central Kitchen’s Healthy School Food and Community Meals programs. 


DC Central Kitchen (DCCK) is an iconic nonprofit and social enterprise that combats hunger and poverty through job training and job creation. Our approach provides hands-on culinary job training while creating living-wage jobs and bringing nutritious, dignified food where it is most needed in our city. We serve scratch-cooked farm-to-school meals in DC schools; deliver fresh, affordable produce to corner stores in neighborhoods without supermarkets; provide delicious catering, and operate three fast-casual cafes. To learn more, visit dccentralkitchen.org or follow @dccentralkitchen on Instagram and @dcck on Twitter.