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LAW Home > Legal Topics > Government Aid and Services > Food - Hunger/Nutrition > General Food Resources

Keeping Cool and Well-Fed in the Summer



Hunger doesn’t take a summer vacation

The USDA Summer Food Service Program ensures that children who rely on free- and reduced-price school meals can continue to receive healthy food during the summer.

Children, parents, and others can easily find nearby summer meal sites using the Summer Meals Site Finder, a web-based application that works on mobile devices and computers without the need to download.

Just enter your address, city, state or zip code to find up to 50 nearby locations, their addresses, hours of operation, contact information, and directions. New locations will be added throughout the summer. To find sites near you, see Find Summer Meals in Your Community (from the US Department of Agriculture).

Don’t be threatened with A/C shut-off in a heat wave

If you get your electric service from a public utility, the utility company cannot terminate your electric service during a heat wave when the temperature is forecast to be 95 degrees or higher for the next two days. If you believe your health is in danger because of a threat to shut off your electric service during a heat wave, call your utility company and the BPU (800-624-0241) right away. Tell them all you can about why you would be in danger because of a shut-off, and provide a note from your doctor if you can, especially if you have medical equipment that requires electricity to operate.

Help with cooling bills for low-income households

Many people suffer from chronic allergies and other respiratory illnesses, including heart- and lung-related problems that make breathing difficult, especially in warm weather. But keeping a home cool can be costly.
The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, or LIHEAP, may be able to help. If you live in an income- eligible household and you can show that at least one household member will be seriously endangered unless the household’s living quarters are cooled, you may be granted a one-time season benefit.

To find out about eligibility, go to Low Income Home Energy Assistance (LIHEAP) (from the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs). Under “How to Apply for Home Energy Assistance,” you’ll find eligibility requirements and an application form.

Cooling Centers Across New Jersey

When temperatures soar, New Jersey’s county governments post online information about local cooling centers in their respective areas. Most sites are libraries, shopping malls, recreation centers, senior centers, municipal buildings, and other air-conditioned public spaces. To find out about cooling centers near you, visit NJ Cooling Centers (from NJ-211).​​​​​​​​