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Old 01-11-2013, 03:06 AM
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Default Are You On The Food Reimbursement Program?

I recently sign up for the USDA’s Child and Adult Care Food Program & still on a learning curve. It's a lot to take in at first, but it's great to recoup my cost of food! I make it a game with the kids to call out what vegetable or meat they are eating while I input each item of the meal online. I'm curious..., who else is on it too?

Here's the link: http://www.fns.usda.gov/cnd/care/cacfp/aboutcacfp.htm

Last edited by coolconfidentme; 01-11-2013 at 03:34 AM. Reason: (spelling)
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Old 01-11-2013, 05:06 AM
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We are also ! I think there are a good number of us who are on the food program.
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Old 01-11-2013, 06:42 AM
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I am and have been for 20 years. For the life of me I can't figure out why anyone who is eligible wouldn't sign on.
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Old 01-11-2013, 07:22 AM
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It was never explain to me how to use the online program, so I've been trying to figure it out as I go. I didn't get reimbursed for breakfast for my first month. I found out I was to select "number of servings" to show a different time slot program. I thought that meant if the kids ate a second serving, which none of them did. Would’ve been helpful to know this, but I guess I’ll figure it all out. Any suggestion will be greatly appreciated!!!
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Old 01-11-2013, 07:22 AM
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I'm on it also. I like getting reimbursed for a portion of the cost of food. Free money as I see it! I'm not going to pass that up!!
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Old 01-11-2013, 07:27 AM
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I am on it too but I am on the lower reimbursement tier. I still get about $300/mo though.
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Old 01-11-2013, 07:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coolconfidentme View Post
It was never explain to me how to use the online program, so I've been trying to figure it out as I go. I didn't get reimbursed for breakfast for my first month. I found out I was to select "number of servings" to show a different time slot program. I thought that meant if the kids ate a second serving, which none of them did. Would’ve been helpful to know this, but I guess I’ll figure it all out. Any suggestion will be greatly appreciated!!!
Is there a specific website that you can go through to look it up? I know in MI there are different sponsors with whom you can go through to be on the CACFP and each has their own website. On my sponsors site, there is a manual that I can look at that explains the rules and such.
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Old 01-11-2013, 07:32 AM
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The simple way to do it if you want to do it online is to make a menu that stays the same. You enter it once then copy/paste. I have a three week menu so I have that copy/pasted through February and the only item I change is one of the fruits which I always list it as an apple (1) so I know that is the fresh fruit item I buy each week at the store and when I enter it at the end of the week it takes about 5 minutes. I've been on it a year and this is the easiest and fastest way to do it! It took a year though!

The only slip up I've done is thinking that hashbrowns are a grain but they're considered a fruit/vegetable category so did that a few times then I remembered! Someone from the food program should show you how you do it. You also have to know how to enter on your calendar is you're closed and also contact your sponsor for the days you're closed so they don't do a drop in inspection those days.
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Old 01-11-2013, 07:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Abigail View Post
The simple way to do it if you want to do it online is to make a menu that stays the same. You enter it once then copy/paste. I have a three week menu so I have that copy/pasted through February and the only item I change is one of the fruits which I always list it as an apple (1) so I know that is the fresh fruit item I buy each week at the store and when I enter it at the end of the week it takes about 5 minutes. I've been on it a year and this is the easiest and fastest way to do it! It took a year though!

The only slip up I've done is thinking that hashbrowns are a grain but they're considered a fruit/vegetable category so did that a few times then I remembered! Someone from the food program should show you how you do it. You also have to know how to enter on your calendar is you're closed and also contact your sponsor for the days you're closed so they don't do a drop in inspection those days.
In IN we have to enter the food at the time it is served. I was given a book/manual on the reimbursement program, but not on the online Minute Menu program or how to use it. The elderly lady who came for the home visit was not computer savvy at all & tried to encourage me to do the old fashion "write it out & mail it it" way. PFFT to that!
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Old 01-11-2013, 08:12 AM
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I'm on it too. Here it is all done on paper still. It is a pain. But worth it.
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  #11  
Old 01-11-2013, 08:22 AM
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Minute Menu Software has several on-line trainings to help you utilize the software to the max. You can take all sorts of free webinars and/or self guided training snippets. Definitely worth checking out.

http://www.training.minutemenu.com/

Each food program sponser requires their participants to do things in whatever way works best for them.

For example Abigail mentioned doing one menu and just switiching out the fruit or veggies aspect of it. My food program sponsor would frown on that as we are suppose to be using a variety of foods and using one menu reapeatedly would automatically garner us an unannounced visit and a mini-training lesson on spicing up our food menus to make sure we are not doing the same one over and over.
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Old 01-11-2013, 08:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coolconfidentme View Post
In IN we have to enter the food at the time it is served. I was given a book/manual on the reimbursement program, but not on the online Minute Menu program or how to use it. The elderly lady who came for the home visit was not computer savvy at all & tried to encourage me to do the old fashion "write it out & mail it it" way. PFFT to that!
You can schedule your planned meals ahead of time under "Daily Activities" and then "Schedule Meals for Month." I plan my menus each week based on whatever I purchased at the grocery store, then when I go to record the meal it gives me a popup option to use the meal I already planned for that time. Even if you use the planned menu you can change any component if you changed foods at the last moment.

You can also make your own meal template (it's under the Daily Activities) menu, too. You can use their predefined templates as well.
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Old 01-11-2013, 10:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaisyMamma View Post
I'm on it too. Here it is all done on paper still. It is a pain. But worth it.
Here too! It is a pain but it takes minutes and the check each month is nice!
I went to a Tom Copland training a few years ago where he said being in the food program is like giving yourself a raise. If your spouse was offered a raise at work which came with slightly more work but more $ would you tell him not to take it? Of course not!
I am on the lower tier and get about $200 a month.
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Old 01-11-2013, 11:44 AM
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No doubt is is soooo worth it. Thanks everyone for the help! You have provided more that my 'pen to paper' sponsor has, god bless her.

ps..., Blackcat31; thanks for the link to training!!! You are an angel!!
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Old 01-11-2013, 11:51 AM
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I'm on it, too. I love being able to claim online with Minute Menu
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