The Walmart Foundation has donated $15 million for a summer family food initiative. The donation will provide free meals and nutrition education programs to help children and families. The education portion is an effort to help families learn healthy eating habits. That is a skill that will impact generations to come.
The $15 million in grants will provide meals and nutrition education to 1.4 million children and families in more than 1,500 communities. According to a study that came out this past June, the number of children participating in the United States Department of Agriculture ( USDA) Summer Nutrition Programs has increased over the last year. Over the last year, only one in seven children received meals during the summer months. This leaves many children underserved and vulnerable with negative impacts on their health and development. The nonprofit organizations set to receive grant funding from the Walmart Foundation, include:
Children’s Health Fund– was co- founded in 1987 by singer/songwriter Paul Simon and pediatrician/child advocate Irwin Redlener, MD. CHF is committed to providing health care to the nation’s most medically under served children.
Food Research and Action Center (FRAC) – The leading national nonprofit organization working to improve public policies and public-private partnerships to eradicate hunger and under nutrition in the United States. FRAC works with many national, state and local nonprofit organizations, public agencies, corporations and labor organizations to address hunger, food insecurity, and their root cause, poverty.
League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) – Has a mission to advance the economic condition, educational attainment, political influence, housing, health and civil rights of the Hispanic population of the United States.
National 4-H Council – The nation’s largest youth development and empowerment organization, 4-H’ers engage in hands-on learning activities in the areas of science, healthy living, and food security.
National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) – Looks to enhance the quality of life for all people through conservation efforts of parks, recreation and environment.
YMCA of the USA (The Y) – A Community centered non- profit, the Y has been strengthening communities for decades.
Additionally, part of the initiative is the kick off of a five week program to challenge families everywhere to health eating together throughout the summer. Renowned Chef Lorena Garcia is helping to kick off the Walmart’s Eat Healthy Together Challenge. Chef Garcia is a renowned chef and author with TV appearances on BRAVO’s ‘Top Chef Masters’ and NBC’s ‘Biggest Loser.’
Families can join the challenge by taking these simple steps:
1. Follow @WalmartHealthy on Twitter.
2. Post photos or updates on Twitter of your family eating healthy meals together, and include hashtags #EatHealthyTogether #Contest.
3. Check out @WalmartHealthy each Monday for the announcement of the winning Challenge Tweet of the week; each winner will be awarded a $25 Walmart gift card.
The challenge will run from Monday, June 30, 2014, through Monday, August 4, 2014. Entries need to be received by 10:00 a.m. ET on Mondays to be considered for the contest each week.
To learn more about meal planning and how families can create healthy meals together, please visit foundation.walmart.com/eathealthytogether