Free summer meal program for kids in McDonough County

School is out for the summer, creating a need for families whose children receive free meals at school, but a summer lunch program in McDonough County, Illinois, is putting families at ease. 

The program is run by Genesis Garden and provides free meals for anyone 18 years old and younger. 

The free meals are served at three locations; two in Macomb and one in Bushnell.

Monday at the First Presbyterian Church in Macomb, over forty kids received a free meal. 

With over sixty percent of elementary school students in Bushnell and Macomb eligible for the free and reduced school lunch program, there is no proof of income or registration required. 

Candace Whitman, the Executive Director of Genesis Gardens says the program puts parents at ease.

I think it really makes a big difference in our community, that parents can you know, take a breath and go oh yeah, my kid can eat food today. And even if it’s a child who has food at home, they’re more than welcome to come and join us and enjoy a meal and have some fun with their friends.

The program is U-S-D-A sponsored and is run through the Illinois State Board of Education, which funds the meals given to the children.

To donate fresh produce or to volunteer, contact Candace Whitman at (309) 326-3075 or

Schedule and times of free meals:

Macomb (May 29 – August 14) 
First Presbyterian Church, 400 E. Carroll St.

  • Breakfast 9:45 a.m. – 10:15 a.m.
  • Lunch from 11:45 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Prairieview Community Center, 1407 E Wheeler St.

  • Lunch 11:15 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Bushnell (June 11 – August 10)

  • Community Christian Center, at 355 W Main St.
  • Lunch 12 p.m. – 12:30 p.m.



More News

Scroll to top
Skip to content