The Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) provides cash reimbursements to eligible organizations and day care home providers for nutritious meals that are served in care settings. The U.S. Department of Agriculture administers the program nationwide, providing funding to states. The California Department of Social Services (CDSS) administers the program in California.
About the Program
The Child and Adult Care Food Program, commonly called the CACFP, is a program that provides cash reimbursements for nutritious meals that are served to infants, children, and adults in care settings. Eligible childcare centers, adult day care centers, afterschool care centers, emergency shelters, and day care homes can participate in the CACFP and receive reimbursements to cover some of their food costs. By participating in CACFP, care providers can improve the quality of day care and make it more affordable for low-income families.
To learn more about the program, continue reading or check out our Introduction to the CACFP video.
There are five components to the CACFP: Child Care, Adult Day Care, Emergency Shelter, At-risk Afterschool Meals, and Day Care Homes. Organizations may be able to participate in the CACFP under one of these components if they meet eligibility requirements.
- The Child Care component is available to licensed and unlicensed child care centers. Examples of eligible organizations include: Early Head Start centers, Head Start centers, Even Start centers, infant centers, preschool centers, and outside-school-hours centers.
- The Adult Day Care component is available to public or private nonprofit adult day care organizations and certain for-profit organizations. Facilities must be nonresidential and serve functionally impaired adults or adults age 60 or older. Examples of eligible organizations include: adult day care centers, support day care centers, adult day health centers, and approved Alzheimer centers.
- The Emergency Shelter component is available to any facility whose primary purpose is to provide temporary shelter to homeless families with children. Residents 18 years and younger who receive their meals at an emergency shelter are automatically eligible for free meals.
- The At-risk Afterschool Meals component is available to public or nonprofit afterschool programs that serve a meal or snack to children in low-income areas. Examples of eligible organizations: school food authorities, military organizations, Boys and Girls Clubs, Young Men’s Christian Association sites, and Young Women’s Christian Association sites.
- The Day Care Homes component (also known as Family Day Care Homes) offers reimbursement to providers that operate out of the provider's home. These providers may have a Community Care License through CDSS, which allows them to care for children at their home business. They may also operate through the TrustLine program to care for a small number of children (for example, families who hire a babysitter or a neighbor who takes care of children while their parents are at work). DCH providers must work with a sponsoring organization to operate the CACFP.
About the CACFP Branch
Our mission is to provide equitable access to nutritious meals for infants, children, and adults in the community by supporting our CACFP Operators through policy guidance, nutrition education, and training.
Our vision is to ensure infants, children, and adults have access to healthy meals through the CACFP, and our Program Operators have the support and resources to successfully administer the program.
This institution is an equal opportunity provider.
Esta institución es un proveedor que ofrece igualdad de oportunidades.