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Eat Healthy New York initiative to be inaugurated at Bailey School tomorrow at 10:45 AM
Release Date: March 12, 2014

Food Bank for Westchester and the
Town of Greenburgh Announce Eat Healthy New York
 
New Program to Educate Local Children about Nutrition-- INITIATIVE TO BE LAUNCHED AT RICHARD BAILEY SCHOOL THURSDAY 10:45 am
 
WHITE PLAINS, NY (March 2014) — Childhood obesity rates tripled in the past 30 years, a trend that means, for the first time in our history, American children may face a shorter than expected lifespan than their parents. The Food Bank for Westchester and the Town of Greenburgh will launch a new initiative called Eat Healthy New York with an event on March 13 at 10:45 a.m. at the Richard J. Bailey School, in Greenburgh, designed to encourage children to learn about healthy foods and become their own best advocates for nutritious eating.
This partnership will bring Eat Healthy Rhode Island, an initiative sponsored by The Picture of Children’s Health, to New York in a larger effort to reach a national audience. Eat Healthy was created by Joy Feldman, East Greenwich nutritional consultant and author of Is Your Hair Made of Donuts?, a lighthearted approach to teaching children about proper nutrition. Ms. Feldman will be in attendance to encourage children to celebrate their health, read her book and develop a new culture that supports wellness.
“We are continually working to find creative ways to leverage resources to reach more people with nutritious food and to educate our communities about the importance of nutrition,” said Food Bank for Westchester Executive Director Ellen Lynch. “Partnering with the Town of Greenburgh to customize the successful Eat Healthy Rhode Island program here in NY is a fabulous and impactful way to reach children during National Nutrition Month.”
The Food Bank’s Kraft Mobile Food Pantry will be on hand to deliver fresh bananas and apples to the participating schools.
Last year’s All State Read in Rhode Island, an event featuring a variety of programs built around reading Is Your Hair Made Out of Donuts?, engaged more than 75,000 students in more than 200 schools statewide. And the second-annual event, now known as Eat Healthy RI, promises to be even bigger. “We expect a total of more than 120,000 participants in 407 schools, community organizations, and businesses to hear, watch or listen to a variety of selected options and books, and participate in a wide range of activities designed to motivate kids to celebrate good health and create a new culture of wellness,” noted Ms. Feldman.
The Food Bank and Town of Greenburgh Supervisor Paul Feiner are serving as the catalysts to bring this nutrition awareness campaign to NY, starting in Greenburgh and hopefully spreading throughout the county and state-wide over the next couple of years. “Our hope is that other school districts, community organizations and businesses will hear our message and want to become a part of this initiative,” said Mr. Feiner.
At the event, Mr. Feiner will ‘deputize’ the participating children and have the group recite the Eat Healthy NY oath. By taking this oath, the hope is that the children will go home and enforce the importance of healthy eating with their parents and extended family. Afterwards, Ms. Feldman’s book will be read in the library and students will receive official Eat Healthy NY certificates. 
“We are at a juncture where we need to empower children to learn what healthy foods are and are not, and to help them become their own best advocates when asking for and receiving meals. I am so pleased to have joined in this fight with the Food Bank for Westchester and the Town of Greenburgh,” Ms. Feldman noted.  “It is time for us and for our children to learn they are what they eat. The early years are crucial for children’s health because young people have tremendous internal demands on their bodies for development. They are building a system and laying a foundation of health for a lifetime. And by implementing creative and educational healthy eating programs for children, nutrition education and other collaborative efforts we can effectively assist in reducing the staggering statistics in the current childhood obesity crisis.”
In addition to promoting nutrition education in the schools, Food Bank for Westchester will also be hosting a week of educational programs at its various Kids Café locations in honor of National Nutrition Month. Is Your Hair Made of Donuts will be read at 4 pm at the following locations, proceeded by a talk with the children on healthy eating and a lesson on making a delicious fruit salad:
·     Monday, March 10  YMCA of Yonkers 
·     Tuesday, March 11  New Little Branches
·     Wednesday, March 12 Lois Bronz Children’s Center
·     Thursday, March 13  Boys & Girls Clubs Mt. Kisco
 
About the Food Bank for Westchester
Incorporated in 1988, the Food Bank for Westchester is one of eight regional food banks in New York State. It acquires, warehouses and distributes more than 7.4 million pounds of food annually to 265 frontline hunger-relief programs, including food pantries, soup kitchens, shelters, day care and residential programs serving the estimated 200,000 Westchester residents who are hungry or at risk of being hungry. Based in Elmsford, NY, the Food Bank is located in a 36,000sf warehouse and is home to Westchester’s largest refrigerator and freezer. For more information, visit www.foodbankforwestchester.org.
 
About The Picture of Children’s Health
The Picture of Children’s Health is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to ‘ educate and empower’ children to make lifelong healthy lifestyle choices and achieve optimal health. Through our three-tiered approach – Empowering Children, Promoting Education and Creating solutions- we contribute to and impact the education, empowerment and optimization of children’s health in Rhode Island with the long-term goal of doing so across the nation.  Visit www.thepictureofchildrenshealth.org
 

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