What We Do
Second Harvest Food Bank well understands that food is medicine and nutritious meals matter. Food insecure households served by the Food Bank can be caught in a vicious cycle connecting poverty, health, and food insecurity. In response, the Food Bank has developed a dynamic nutrition education program to promote healthy and safe food for those that need it most. The Nutrition Department at Second Harvest Food Bank has three main goals: 1. Ensure food distributed to clients is healthy, 2. Encourage clients to consume the healthy food that they receive, and 3. Provide food safety education. Each of these goals is critical to ensuring that clients and their families are happy and healthy!
One of our main goals is ensuring that food distributed to clients is healthy. We have a progressive Healthy Food & Beverage Policy that guides our distribution of nutritious foods that clients want and deserve to live healthy, active lives free from hunger. In addition, we work closely with our Food Resources team to plan a menu of distributed food that is healthy, culturally appropriate, and delicious.
Another goal is to help encourage and inspire clients to eat the healthy food that they receive. We visit sites to educate clients on nutrition using cooking demonstrations, basic lessons based on USDA dietary recommendations, food tastings, and recipe cards. We are currently working on developing more in-depth curricula including nutrition consultations and workshops. We maintain the latest nutrition education resources for our partner agencies and clients both online and at our Nutrition Education centers at our Curtner and Bing locations. Finally, we give presentations regularly on customized nutrition topics for our agencies upon request. To see our nutrition education in action, check out our Facebook Group page!
In addition to ensuring that food is healthy, we work hard to make sure that all of the food is safe. The entire Nutrition Department is ServSafe certified to be able to provide high quality technical assistance both internally and to our agencies. We give two free trainings a month for our agencies and direct service sites to keep up-to-date on food safe practices.
Interested in helping Nutrition achieve these objectives? Check out our Volunteer page!