Health Departments as Site Partners

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Health Departments sometimes have underutilized or little-known resources that can be leveraged for Summer Food Service programming. They’re a great place to find health and nutrition experts committed to serving the needs of the community. Partnering with your local Health Department can help bring a nutrition-education aspect to programming. Check out the role Allen County’s Health Department played in 2015:

Allen County’s Health Department was involved with SFSP in 2015. A representative, Carolyn Richey,from the Maternal Child Health (MCH) program collaborated with the public school system and the local police station to play a supportive, educational role. The public school system served as the sponsor and prepared the meals. The meals were delivered to the police station site. Carolyn Richey brought water and snacks (like apples) for the kids to take home with them. The water and snacks were bought with petty cash and were not funded by SFSP, so the kids were able to take the food with them when they left the site. While the kids were eating, Carolyn discussed the nutrients and the health benefits in the meals the kids were eating that day. If kids walked or rode their bikes to the police station, she talked to them about the health benefits of physical activity and encouraged it. In her words, she provided “simple encouragement for things they were already doing.” As Carolyn stated “I have worked 26 years in the health department doing various roles. The Summer Feeding Project felt like good public health and good public health nursing.”

Girls with Fruit

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