Latest News for the Summer Meal Programs

March Summer Meals Marketing Checklist - Begin Planning to Promote your Summer Meal Sites

" March 1, 2022 - Whether you call it a marketing plan, an action plan, or a to-do list, planning to promote your summer meal sites and setting goals is key to maximizing success. TDA is ready to support you with your monthly to-dos to prepare for summer meals marketing. Click here for your March Marketing Checklist!
March 1, 2022

Summer Meal Programs Monthly Marketing Checklist

  1. Download the Summer Meals Best Practices Guidebook - The summer guidebook shows how CEs can use TDA resources and marketing tactics to support their promotional efforts. This guide was designed to help CEs achieve their goals. Access it at
  2. Schedule a planning meeting with staff – March is the time to begin planning promotions and special events. Think through staffing for your kickoff event or volunteer recruitment. Communicate with staff often in the planning phase.
  3. Review TDA’s free resources - TDA provides many free materials that can help make special events a success. Visit for a variety of downloadable materials and check back soon to order materials such as posters, yard signs and more.
  1. Order TDA promotional materials – TDA resources have been designed to increase awareness and attendance of your meal sites. They include door hangers, program posters, fillable posters, a variety of yard signs, bookmarks, and parent information cards. These resources and more are available to order at no cost or to download at any time at
  2. Plan kickoff event – A kickoff event to celebrate the opening of your summer meal sites builds awareness among parents and creates excitement around summer meals. Are there special guests that could increase participation in the event? Perhaps a local elected official, a faith-based leader, or perhaps a football star. Refer to the Summer Meals Best Practices Guidebook for more ideas on how to make your event a success!
  3. Build your communication timeline – Think about the different ways you plan to spread the word about summer meals. Make your plan diverse with web, print, and social media promotion. Get ahead by writing and scheduling your social media posts. Review the Social Media Support packet for more ideas. Marketing best practices are to share information through three or more mediums.
  1. Distribute TDA outreach materials. The materials you’ve ordered will begin to arrive. Distribute to sites once they arrive and plan for sites to distribute materials in the community to increase grass roots promotion.
  2. Invite local government and media to kickoff event – Request for a representative to attend your events and promote your event on their communication platforms. Customizable press releases and proclamations are available for download at
  3. Create a social media plan - Leveraging the power of your website and social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, can be one of the most cost-effective and compelling marketing tactics you can deploy. Social media allows you to share content as it happens and tailor your message to specific audiences. Use social media to showcase meals and to promote activities and upcoming events. Check out the Social Media Support Packet for a wealth of information and ideas to help you plan, launch, and sustain effective social media promotion.
  1. Host kick-off event- You’re prepared for your event and now it’s time to kickoff summer meals! Share any special events widely to create buzz for your meal sites. Go “live” on social media to share behind the scenes kickoff event preparation or summer meal preparation and fun activities you have at your site to entice parents and participants.
  2. Visit – TDA’s meal finder map is now live on Visit the map and enter information to locate a summer meal site in your district and verify that the details are correct. If incorrect, update your TX-UNPS site application.
  3. Order additional outreach materials- More materials are available if needed at
  4. Begin thinking about a follow-up event in July – Once the dust from all of your hard work has settled, think about a follow-up event in July to keep up meal site participation. Refer to the Summer Meals Best Practices Guidebook for great ideas for spike events!


Assistance available in English and Spanish. Please call 877-TEX-MEAL (877-839-6325) for help.

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1. Mail:
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Washington, D.C. 20250-9410; or
2. Fax: (833) 256-1665 or (202) 690-7442; or
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