This month, Whole Kids Foundationâ„¢ is fundraising with the goal of raising $3 million to provide schools nationwide with salad bars, gardens and nutrition education classes for teachers.
“With one-third of the nation’s children overweight or obese, and 31.6 million children relying on lunch served through the national school lunch program each year, the opportunity to improve childhood nutrition in schools is real and immediate,” said Nona Evans, executive director of Whole Kids Foundation. “By bringing more fresh fruits and vegetables to school cafeterias and supporting learning environments that connect kids to how food is grown, we can help shape healthier eating habits for our children.”
From kindergarten through high school, the average child will eat 2,300 lunches .Â The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that children eat three times more fruits and vegetables when they have regular access to salad bars at school.
Whole Foods Market invites shoppers to help by:
- Purchasing products from participating brands that give back, including Mrs. Meyers, Yellow 108, Peeled Snacks, Red Jacket Orchards, and High Mowing Organic Seeds. One percent of proceeds from each sale of these brands’ products at select Whole Foods Market stores will benefit Whole Kids Foundation programs.
- Making a donation at the register.
- Texting “SALAD” to 20222 to donate $10 to support additional salad bar grants for schools.
- Visiting Whole Kids Foundation online to donate and find ways to get involved at wholekidsfoundation.org
Find your inner salad artist
To bring further awareness to the initiative and make healthy eating fun, Whole Kids Foundation is launching a National Salad Bowl Design Contest in partnership with MySocialCanvas which shoppers, teachers and students create and submit their own unique salad bowl designs. The contest will run through Nov. 31, and the winning designer will receive free salad for a year from Whole Foods Market. For more information and to enter, visit wholekidsfoundation.org.
Apply for a grant today
Whole Kids Foundation’s School Garden Grant Program, created in partnership with FoodCorps, is accepting applications now through Oct. 31. All schools and garden-related nonprofit organizations are eligible to apply this fall for grants to support the implementation or expansion of on-campus teaching gardens.Â In partnership with Let’s Move Salad Bars to Schools, applications for the foundation’s Salad Bar Grant Program are accepted on an ongoing basis at saladbars2schools.org. In addition to the freestanding mobile salad bar, each grant recipient receives access to thelunchbox.org, a free comprehensive online portal that helps lunchrooms transition from frozen and boxed foods to fresh, whole, scratch-cooked foods.
Since its inception in 2011, Whole Kids Foundation has funded 2,600 salad bars and 1,600 school gardens, giving more than 2.2 million children access to healthier food.
Key Data Release (August 2010 Release).” http://www.fns.usda.gov/fns/data.htm.