Free Meals for Children of Creative Minds Families

Creative Minds is partnering with Genuine Foods to offer free meals to our students, and any other children in their households, during the COVID-19 public-health emergency.

Meals will be “touchlessly” delivered to community members’ homes once a week, beginning Wednesday, April 15, 2020. Registration, in writing, is required.

Please read our FAQs for more information:

How can I participate in this food program?
Anyone who wants to participate must sign up and provide consent in writing. Choose one of these ways to sign up:

When you sign up, please provide this information:

  • Your first and last name
  • Daytime phone number
  • Your email address (if you have one)
  • Address you want your food delivered to
  • Full names and birth dates of the children you’re registering for the program

Will the information I give you be shared beyond Creative Minds?
Only your address and phone number will be shared—with Genuine Foods, our food-distribution partner. All other information will be kept in confidence.

Is there a registration deadline?
No, you can register for this program at any time, for as long as it’s in service.

If you’d like to receive our first delivery of food, on April 15, please sign up by Friday, April 10, at 9:00 p.m. [NOTE: This deadline date was changed on April 10; the deadline was originally April 13, at 9:00 a.m. We apologize for the last-minute change.]

Is there any cost to participate?
This program is free—there is no cost to families and staff.

Are there any income requirements?
No—there are no income requirements for the program.

Who is eligible to receive meals?
Creative Minds students, and other children in their households, are eligible for meals if they meet these requirements:

  • Reside in Washington, DC (Meals can be delivered only to DC addresses.)
  • Younger than 18 years old
  • Live in the household of a Creative Minds family

Children do not have to be students at CMI.

I have other children in my household who do not attend Creative Minds. Can they participate as well?
Yes, they can! Whether those children are siblings of CMI students, your nieces and nephews, or other residents of your household, they can receive free meals, too; this includes the children of a roommate.

How does the program work?
Once a week, you’ll receive a delivery of food. The delivery will contain seven breakfast meals and seven lunch meals for each child you registered for the program.

Note that deliveries will be “touchless.” You won’t have to sign for a delivery.

What if my children live in another household part time—can they receive meals at this other address?
We can change your delivery address from one week to the next if your children move between households—for example, from the apartment of one parent to the apartment of another. The only requirement is that both households be in Washington, DC. We’re unable to deliver meals to addresses in Maryland, Virginia, or anywhere else outside DC.

We’ll ask you to contact us at least two business days before a delivery date so that we can change the address for the next delivery.

Contact Heather Hesslink at or (301) 919-1318 to change a delivery address.

Can Genuine Foods accommodate my child who has a food allergy or who doesn’t eat certain foods for another reason?
Genuine Foods can provide meals that are lactose free and nut free. It can also provide vegetarian, but not vegan, meals. We’ll do our best to accommodate other food allergies and dietary restrictions, though we may be limited by what’s available in the supply chain.

How long will the free-meals program last?
This program will last for as long as there is a COVID-19 public-health emergency.

Can I participate if my family is homeless?
Yes, you can. Contact Heather Hesslink at or (301) 919-1318.

Whom can I contact if I have questions that aren’t answered here?
Heather Hesslink can answer all your questions about the program. Email her at or call, or send a text message to, (301) 919-1318.