This new initiative will provide children and their families’ access to fresh produce during the summer months.
Children who receive summer meals and their families will get a boost this summer thanks to a partnership between two agencies of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, Nutritional Development Services (NDS) and Catholic Charities Appeal (CCA).
Dedicated staff from the NDS Community Food Program will set up produce stands at various sites throughout the Philadelphia area to provide nourishing produce at no cost to children and families who have limited access to fresh items. Participants will also receive vital nutrition information and the option to sample healthy recipes.
Brooke Mullen, Assistant Director of Community Relations for NDS said, “NDS is thrilled to collaborate with the Catholic Charities Appeal to offer fresh produce at select meal sites this summer. Offered alongside our USDA Summer Meals Program, children will have the opportunity to receive a nourishing meal, nutrition education, and fresh produce to take home and enjoy. We look forward to teaching children and their families the importance of fruits and vegetables in their diets, while sharing new, tasty ways to enjoy them.”
A healthy diet that includes fresh fruit and vegetables may reduce the risk of chronic health problems including obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, digestive problems, diabetes, and cancer. For children the benefits include stronger bones and teeth and the ability to fight off germs.
Donations made through a dedicated link can help purchase fresh produce for families. A donation of just $25 could provide a family with a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables, including fresh apples, avocados, blueberries, nectarines and other seasonal produce.
To make a donation and to support the fresh produce initiative, please visit https://www.catholiccharitiesappeal.org/donate/nds/
Editor’s Note: The Catholic Charities Appeal (CCA) is the Archdiocese of Philadelphia’s single most important fundraiser benefiting hundreds of thousands of people through countless organizations and ministries in the Archdiocese. Programs receiving funding from CCA include housing for the homeless, community food cupboards, afterschool academic enrichment and recreational opportunities for youth, and family support services. To learn more about the Catholic Charities Appeal and this initiative, please visit https://www.catholiccharitiesappeal.org/getting-involved/nds-fresh-produce-initiative/.
For over forty-five years, NDS’ mission has been to serve children and those in need with healthy food and food-related resources. NDS accomplishes its mission in two distinct ways: by administering the federally-funded child nutrition programs and through the privately supported Community Food Program. To learn more about Nutritional Development Services of the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, please visit http://nutritionaldevelopmentservices.org/