Summer 2021 Reimbursement Funds for California Public Library Meal Programming

The Lunch at the Library project is pleased to provide support to libraries offering 2021 summer meal programs. The project will provide reimbursement for the cost of programming materials for library meal sites and pop-up library programming at non-library community meal sites.

All California public library jurisdictions interested in serving as summer meal distribution sites during Summer 2021, and/or planning to take pop-up library programming out to community meal sites are encouraged to apply!!

Once all requests for reimbursement funds have been received we will work to divide the funds as equitably as possible among applying libraries. Reimbursement levels will not be set until all requests for funds have been received.

Estimated reimbursement levels for Summer 2021 are as follows:

  • $1000-$2000 in reimbursements for programming materials for each new first-time library outlet serving as a meal distribution site
  • $500-$1000 in reimbursements for programming materials for each library outlet already established as a meal distribution site
  • $500-$750 in reimbursements for programming materials for pop-up library locations at community meal distribution sites (Due to the high volume of pop-up library locations, we may be unable to award reimbursement funds to all pop-up library sites.)

To apply, please complete an application form here:

Application deadline has been extended to Friday, March 26th, 2021

Please submit one application (per library jurisdiction) that includes all of your branch funding requests.

For your convenience, in preparation for completing the online application via SurveyMonkey, a preview of the application questions is available here:
Preview Lunch at the Library 2021 Funding Application Questions

Application Details and Information:

  • Applications are for programming material reimbursements for library outlets serving as summer meal distribution sites and/or for library outlets visiting and enhancing non-library community meal sites with pop-up library programming.
  • Reimbursement allocations will be determined once all applications have been received following the March 19th, 2021 application deadline.
  • Library jurisdictions may apply for as many library outlets as are providing summer meal programming (either at the library or at a community meal site in the form of pop-up library programming)
  • Due to the finite nature of project funds, applying libraries may not be awarded reimbursement funds for all the locations for which they apply.

Reimbursement Allocation Details and Information:

  • Project staff will request a list of your proposed programming materials that you plan to submit for reimbursement so that we can ensure that those items are allowable costs under LSTA guidelines
  • Libraries will be required to submit a reimbursement request form for their library jurisdiction, with supporting documentation, once programming materials have been purchased.
  • Expenses must be for library summer meal programming and operating supplies, and can include the following:

Programming Materials and Supplies

Reimbursements are available for supplies that are integral to your library summer meal programming. Programming can be in-person, remote/virtual, or hybrid library programs. Programming materials and supplies may include: art/craft and office supplies, educational materials and literature, or books as an integral part of a programming activity; other expenses may include small equipment, program promotional materials, etc., that are also an integral part of the program.  (Costs of promotional items and memorabilia, including models, gifts, and souvenirs, are unallowable.)

Please note: Materials and supplies must be an integral, necessary component of a library program. If items are distributed for children and/or teens to take home, they must directly support participation in a library program. For example, a kit that includes crafting materials that enables children to take part in an arts and craft activity, either with instructions included in the kit so that children, teens or families can take part in the activity in a self-directed manner, or, as an online program presented by the library; a book distributed to a child/teen/family that includes information on how to sign up for a library’s summer reading/learning/exploration program to support summer program participation.

Questions? Please contact:

Trish Garone, Lunch at the Library Program Manager

Kari Johnson, Lunch at the Library Meals and Partnerships Coordinator

Summer @ Your Library: Explore, Learn, Read, Connect, and the Lunch at the Library project, are programs of the California Library Association, supported in whole or in part by the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act, administered in California by the State Librarian.