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A lot of kids love the summer time because they don’t have to go to school. But for some, not having a school breakfast and lunch means they can go hungry this time of year.

Juile Bradley is the food service director for Medford public schools. Even though it’s summer, the kitchen here at McGlynn Elementary is busy. On this days she is making lunches to take to six parks and their school site.

“This is sun butter and jelly,” she says,“we’re a peanut-free school,” she adds, explaining that sub butter is made from sunflower seeds.

These sandwiches will be handed out free at parks around Medford, as part of a federal program that pays for summer meals for low-income kids. Bradley says they’re serving about 100 lunches each day.

“And I hope to increase it to 200 lunches,” says Bradley, who believes there are at least 200 hungry kids who need those lunches.

At Tufts Park in Medford, the sandwiches— along with It comes with milk and some healthy side treats— are handed out to about 20 kids. Adults over 18 are turned away as the kids sit at picnic tables and gobble up the free food.

Parent Theresa Wright points out that you don’t have to fill out any forms or prove your income. They’re just handing out lunches to kids in the park.

“People are here, and you don’t know who needs help and who doesn’t need help,” says Wright, “And then, it’s OK. No one feels like it’s stigmatized.”

That’s by design. Ellen Parker is the executive Director of Project Bread, which administers the summer food program for the state department of education.

“The more invisible hunger relief is, the more effective it is,” she says. “Because then nobody has to raise their hand and say, ‘I’m poor’ or ‘I’m in need.’”

Last year, nearly 390 thousand low-income children in Massachusetts qualified for free or reduced priced lunch during the school year. Only 15 percent of them received a summer meal.

Parker says that’s because of barriers to reaching the children. One challenge is just letting parents know.

“We do outreach in multiple languages. We reach out to various ethic communities through churches, other ways.”

But the biggest issue is accessibility. The federal government will only pay for summer lunch if more than half of kids in a school or neighborhood qualify for free or reduced price lunches during the school year. That excludes most suburban and rural areas. The following interactive map, created by Project Bread, shows where summer meals sites are located in the state.

Congress is currently debating how much to fund the child nutrition program that includes summer meals, and Parker says they’re hoping to get that bar set lower, at 40 percent of kids having to be free and reduced.

“It recognizes that certain communities have pockets of poverty. And so in those sections of communities or in those particular neighborhoods it allows for there to be eligibility for kids who may live surrounded by a wealthier community.”

The proposed shift would make 119 more schools eligible to host summer food sites, according to Project Bread.

Congressman Jim McGovern says the summer meal program should be expanded.

On this day, he’s dishing out salad to kids on line to get lunch at the Spanish American Center in Leominster.

McGovern says he supports lowering the requirement to get a summer meals site from 50 percent to 40 percent of kids qualifying for free or reduced price meals.

“Lets be honest, the reason why it’s not at 40 is because you’ve got members of Congress who are obsessed with budgets and deficits and spending and all that kind of stuff,” says McGovern. “I get it, but to me every investment in a program like this summer meals program, we get paid back 100 fold.”

Kevin Concannon is an undersecretary at the USDA. He joined the Congressman in the serving line.

“The history of that limitation is really one of budget,” Concannon says. “It’s not one of morality or of need. It’s budget. So we ‘d love to see in the reauthorization of this act a recognition of that and an ability to really reach out to more of these children that struggle.”

Concannon says Congress has failed to support other options tried by the USDA, like giving families a debit card for groceries on the last day of school.

The kids at the Spanish American Center in Leominster don’t care about the politics. They just care about lunch.

And according to these small mouths: “It’s good!”