Summer 2021 P-EBT Information

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For general information and latest updates, please visit the P-EBT main webpage.

2022 Summer P-EBT   2021-22 School Year P-EBT


The information below refers to summer 2021 P-EBT benefits in North Carolina. 

P-EBT benefits were issued for summer 2021 as an extension of the 2020-21 school year based on summer-specific eligibility rules. Eligible students and children under age 6 received a one-time payment of $375 for the summer. All 2021 summer benefits have been issued to eligible households.

Summer P-EBT

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Eligibility for the summer is based on child circumstances as of the last full month of the 2020-21 school year (May 2021). Eligibility for summer is not determined based on school attendance or learning mode, therefore students attending summer learning programs will still be eligible for the full summer P-EBT amount.

Students and children under age 6 are eligible for summer P-EBT if they meet one of the following criteria:

  1. The child was eligible to receive free or reduced-price meals through the National School Lunch Program (NSLP) or Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) in the last full month of the school year, OR
  2. The child applies and becomes eligible for NSLP free or reduced-price meals or FNS at any time during the covered summer period (June through August 2021)

For more information on how to apply for free or reduced-price meals through the National School Lunch Program, please contact your child’s local school district.

To find out if your household is eligible for FNS food assistance benefits, there are three ways to apply:

  1. Apply online at The NC FAST ePASS website now includes a Spanish translation option, as well as the ability to complete the full application process in Spanish online.
  2. Apply in person at your county Department of Social Services (DSS) office.
  3. Fill out a paper application and mail to or drop it off at your county DSS.

Additional information regarding summer P-EBT can be found in the P-EBT FAQs.

North Carolina will issue a one-time standard benefit of $375 per eligible child for the summer.

Children who are eligible for P-EBT as of May 2021 will receive their benefit at the end of July or early August. Children that become newly eligible for P-EBT over the summer by applying for and being approved for Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) or free or reduced-price school meals through the National School Lunch Program (prior to August 31) will receive their benefit in late September or October.

P-EBT benefits will be provided automatically on a debit-like card. This card will be sent through the mail service if a household does not already have one. Eligible families already receiving Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) benefits can expect to receive an additional benefit on their existing EBT card. Families who received Student P-EBT previously and are eligible under the new criteria can expect to receive additional benefits on their original P-EBT card. Sometimes a new P-EBT card will be mailed even for those who already have cards and the benefits will be issued to the new card.

The P-EBT card functions like a standard EBT card, and the same guidelines apply. The P-EBT card can be used to purchase food items at EBT authorized food and grocery retailers, including most major grocery stores.

P-EBT cards for foster care students will be mailed to the local county Division of Social Services office that has custody of the foster care student. The student's foster care social worker will provide the card or assist with transfer of the card to the student’s new placement. P-EBT cards for homeless and migrant students will be mailed to the address on record for the student at the student’s school.

Families receiving a P-EBT card will need to activate the card and create a Personal Identification Number (PIN) to use the card.

You can activate or order a new card in one of the following ways:

  • Visit Click on “More Information” under EBT Cardholder. You will be prompted to login and/or register your account.
  • Download the ebtEDGE mobile app. The app is available on Apple Store and Google Play.
  • Call 1-888-622-7328 and follow the prompts to activate your card and select a PIN.

To activate your card, you will be asked to enter the date of birth (DOB) associated with the card. Enter the DOB of the youngest student in the household that attends a school that participates in the National School Lunch Program. Enter the DOB as two digits for the month, two digits for the day and four digits for the year. For example, January 24, 2014 would be entered as 01242014. If there are multiple children in your household it may be necessary to try each child’s DOB to successfully activate your P-EBT card. Once the card is activated, you may create your PIN.

If you have lost or destroyed your card, log into, utilize the ebtEDGE mobile app, or please contact the North Carolina EBT Call Center at 1-888-622-7328 to order a new card. Replacing a card on or by using the ebtEDGE mobile app can only be done if the cardholder has previously logged on and created an account. To check if you have an account, please select “Trouble Signing In?” and follow the prompts listed. If you need a card replacement and do not have an ebtEDGE account, please call the EBT Call Center.

Remember to check your balance before you shop. There are several ways to check your EBT card balance 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Using your card number, you can: 

  • Visit Click on More Information under EBT Cardholders.
  • Download the ebtEDGE mobile app. The app is available as a free download on the Apple Store and Google Play.
  • Call 1-888-622-7328.

The P-EBT card can be used to purchase food items at EBT authorized food and grocery retailers, including most major grocery stores. Similar to FNS benefits, hot foods or foods that are already prepared cannot be purchased with your P-EBT benefits.

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If you have questions about P-EBT, please read the Frequently Asked Questions. You can also call the NC EBT Call Center at 1-866-719-0141 for further assistance.

For information on other food resources, please visit visit or call 2-1-1 or 1-888-892-1162. Please note that 2-1-1 cannot assist with eligibility or benefit amount.