(DES MOINES, Iowa) - The Iowa Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) and the Iowa Department of Education have received approval from the United States Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service to issue Summer 2023 Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer (P-EBT) for eligible school-age Iowa children for the 2022-2023 school year.

This program provides $120 per eligible child, issued on new P-EBT cards to be received by October 4. HHS estimates approximately 240,000 Iowa children are eligible for this benefit, totaling $28 million in food assistance.

Generally, school-age children who were in grades K-12 during the 2022-2023 school year and received free and reduced-price meals at school through the National School Lunch Program as of May 31, 2023 are eligible to receive this benefit.

“Access to a consistent, nutritious diet not only ensures a child’s basic needs are being met, these benefits are an investment in their health and future success, which are key focus areas for HHS,” said HHS Director Kelly Garcia. “These additional funds will support thousands of Iowa families in putting nutritious food on their table.”

Summer 2023 P-EBT cards can be used to purchase eligible food items anywhere SNAP EBT cards are accepted. Eligible food items include dairy, eggs, meat, cereal, rice, pasta, bread, fresh, frozen, canned or dried vegetables and fruit, any ingredients you use for cooking, baby formula, diabetic foods, garden seeds, plants for growing food at home, and ice. Food that is already prepared or hot food, pet food, and non-food items are not eligible for purchase with P-EBT cards. For more information, please visit https://www.fns.usda.gov/snap/eligible-food-items.

Families should visit the comprehensive P-EBT FAQ at https://hhs.iowa.gov/food-assistance/related-programs/P-EBT for more information about the Summer 2023 School Age P-EBT program.

If your family struggles with food insecurity check your eligibility for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program at https://hhs.iowa.gov/how-to-apply; or call 211 or the food bank in your community.

Iowa’s P-EBT program is a shared initiative between HHS and the Iowa Department of Education.