GCity Success Story: Summer Meals in Philadelphia
In 2011, Mayor Michael A. Nutter created “Fun Safe Philly Summer” (FSPS) to provide Philadelphia youth with summer programming and opportunities to stay active throughout the school holiday.
To kick off Fun Safe Philly Summer, the city hosts a field day for young people with events such as kickball, tug of war, and dodgeball, in addition to providing free healthy snacks. Throughout the summer, FSPS hosts “pop-up” events with community partners and sponsors that include a pool party, ice skating, skateboarding demonstrations, a pump and jump (bike park) event, and an end-of-summer teen dance party.
In 2012, the Mayor’s Office recruited an AmeriCorps VISTA member to serve as the FSPS Coordinator. While the initiative is managed by the Mayor’s Office of Policy Planning and Coordination, the FSPS Coordinator provides day-to-day implementation and coordination of all strategies. The Mayor’s Office, in partnership with the Greater Philadelphia Coalition Against Hunger, has also recruited AmeriCorps VISTA Summer Associates to perform direct outreach and increase awareness of the summer meals program in targeted high-need neighborhoods. In summer 2014, the VISTAs mobilized 76 community volunteers to distribute 7,197 summer meals door-hangers, palm-sized information cards, and posters over 12 outreach days, and distributed resources to 158 community partners