United Way of Long Island is the recipient of a $25,000 grant from Nature’s Bounty Foundation, supporting the Healthy Kids – Healthy Families Initiative. This program teaches pre-school and school-age students and their families fundamental nutritional, health and cooking skills over the course of the year.
With a goal of reaching 3,000 children from low-income families, Healthy Kids – Healthy Families works with United Way partner agencies YMCA of Long Island and Pronto of Long Island to develop outreach programs that bridge the gap between eating nutritious foods and leading a healthy lifestyle. These outreach programs include:
- Nutritional classes for students and families to learn together;
- A Healthy Kids – Healthy Families coloring book with fun and interactive activities and pictures;
- Cooking activities that teach children different types of fruits, vegetables and meals that combine foods in delicious and healthy ways;
- Easy-to-reference informational cards; and
- An e-newsletter with recipes and educational activity suggestions for families to do as a group.
The grant also funded the creation of the Nature’s Bounty Foundation Garden, located at United Way’s headquarters in Deer Park. This garden’s planting boxes were built by United Way’s YouthBuild Long Island students, who also cultivated, planted, weeded and picked vegetables and herbs grown there. This garden not only teaches the students how to live a healthy lifestyle, but also helps them learn responsibility.