Sodexo and Swipe Out Hunger, a national nonprofit dedicated to ending student hunger, are expanding their Meal Swipe Bank program to 100 U.S. campuses by the end of 2021. The expansion of the program comes after a successful pilot that ran last spring, in which 15,500 meals were served to 1,100 students across 12 campuses.
Through the Meal Swipe Bank program, Sodexo will donate meals equal to the number of fall and spring mandatory meal plans sold. Those meals are then distributed directly onto student ID cards, allowing those enrolled in the program to anonymously redeem the free meals on campus. Students not facing food insecurity can also donate unused meal swipes to their peers.
“Students need our support. The pandemic, unfortunately, has only heightened the already pervasive state of food insecurity, being faced by a third of our students,” said Tom Post, CEO of Sodexo Universities, in a press release. “The Swipe Out Hunger program provides both emergency access to meals and also peace of mind for students that their campus supports them and that there are easily accessible resources should they need access to free meals.”