In light of the COVID-19 outbreak, Mayor Muriel Bowser issued an advisory prohibiting mass gatherings of more than 50 people. Check out the D.C.’s coronavirus page and see below for updates on the changes city agencies and organizations are making to their regular operations to mitigate the spread of the virus. Information is subject to change. 

For local updates on COVID-19 related policy changes and guidance related to food assistance programs, refer to our COVID-19 Policy Updates page


We will be updating information on food resources in the city. For federal updates, please refer to the Food Research & Action Center’s coronavirus page.

Residents who receive SNAP, TANF, Medicaid, Alliance, and other public benefits provided by DHS do not need to take any action at this time to continue receiving benefits that would otherwise expire on March 31 or April 30. Those benefits will be automatically extended.

Economic Security Administration (ESA) Service Centers

For new applications for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), Medicaid, Alliance, or other public benefits, please visit dhs.dc.gov. To help enforce social distancing, DHS Service Centers are open only for picking up and dropping off public benefits applications and documents. All applications and documents must be placed in an envelope provided at the Service Center. Applicants must write their full name and phone number on the front of the envelope prior to placing it in application drop boxes located in the Service Center lobby. In most cases, an interview is not required during the COVID-19 State of Emergency. New applicants may be contacted by a DHS representative by phone if additional information is needed to complete application processing.

Residents currently receiving SNAP, TANF, Medicaid, Alliance, or other public benefits not need to take any action at this time to continue receiving existing benefits that would otherwise expire on March 31 or April 30, even if they have received a letter saying it’s time to recertify. Those benefits will be automatically extended.

Residents with questions about their benefits should contact the Call Center at (202) 727-5355 from 7:30 a.m. – 4:45 p.m. Phone lines will be busy. Applications and verification documents can be emailed to D.C. Hunger Solutions at mjensen@dchunger.org.

Senior Centers
All senior centers and senior meal sites are currently closed and home delivered meals are being provided instead. To receive meals, call the Department of Aging and Community Living’s hotline at  (202) 724-5626. The call center will conduct a quick assessment and connect you to the appropriate service.

Schools – D.C. Public Schools and Public Charter Schools
All D.C. Public Schools will be closed for classes March 16 – 31 in a District-wide effort to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus. Meals will be available for all youth 18 and under every weekday from Monday, March 16 – Tuesday, March 31 from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m. at select sites. Children DO NOT need to be DCPS students in order to receive meals. No ID or prior sign-up is required. Meals will be provided to-go in order to encourage social distancing. More information can be found here.

Along with DCPS, many public charter schools will also be offering meals to students. Children do not need to be enrolled in the charter school to receive meals. More information can be found here.

D.C. Central Kitchen
While schools are closed, DC Central Kitchen will operate two takeaway meal sites at two DC Public Schools: Walker-Jones Education Campus (Ward 6) and Kelly Miller Middle School (Ward 7), Monday through Friday from 10am-2pm at both sites. 

11 Mobile feeding locations serving to-go breakfast and lunch for children:

LocationAddressDay and TimeWard
Arcadia Mobile Markets @ Bellview Library115 Atlantic St, SWWed 2-4pm8
Arcadia Mobile Markets @ EdgewoodEdgewood & Evarts St, NE Wed 11am-1pm5
Benning Courts Community Center1713 Benning Rd, NEMon-Fri 1-2pm6
Brightwood Communities Community Center5805 14th St NWTues, Wed & Thurs 10-11am4
Carver Hall Community Center2338 Pitts Place SEMon-Fri 10-11am8
Children’s Health Center @ THEARC1801 Mississippi Ave SEMon-Sun 12pm-2pm8
Congress Park Community Center1345 Savannah St SEMon-Fri 1-2pm8
Frederick Douglass Community Center1427 Cedar St SEMon-Fri 11:15am-12:15pm8
Greater Love Church4421 Jay Street NEMon-Sun 11am-1pm7
King Towers Community Center1220 12th St NWMon-Fri 11:15am-12:15pm2
Park Naylor Community Center2574 Naylor Rd SEMon-Fri 2:15pm-3:15pm8
The Pentacle Community Center1509 Benning Rd NEMon-Fri 2:15pm-3:15pm6

DC WIC
WIC provides food benefits, nutrition education, breastfeeding support, and healthcare referrals to pregnant women, infants, and children under five. DC WIC has received waivers that will allow the program to get benefits out to participants as quickly and safely as possible. If you are currently on WIC please visit dcwic.org for updates related to COVID-19. If you think you might be eligible for WIC, learn more and how to apply here

DC Food Policy Council
The D.C. Food Policy Council’s website has information and a map of food assistance resources in the District and DMV region. You can also find updates on local food policy related to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Capital Area Food Bank
The food bank’s After School Meals program, which normally provides children with a hot supper on site, will instead provide a to-go meal that can be quickly picked up and eaten at home. At the food bank’s in-school market programs, which ordinarily allows parents and children to choose from among different foods in a free school-based market setting, food will instead be provided in a bagged or boxed set of shelf stable items to allow for social distancing at the point of pickup. And the bags of food that are usually sent home with kids through the food bank’s Weekend Bag program will double in quantity to reduce trips to program locations. More information can be found on the Capitol Area Food Bank’s website.

D.C. Food Project
The D.C. Food Project website has information on emergency food access for families, including information about schools, food sites, and how to help in your community.