Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Parents from PS 35 Farmer’s Market Tour

This post was written by Bronx Health REACH intern Wilka Diaz.

On a beautiful, warm Tuesday morning in October, Bronx Health REACH conducted a farmers market tour at the Bronx Borough Hall Farmers Market for fourteen parents from Public School 35. The group discussed the health benefits of incorporating vegetables and fruits into their diets. Parents discussed strategies to get children to eat more fruits and vegetables. Ideas suggested included the use of colorful plates and tasting each new food at least three times.

As the tour continued, Bronx Health REACH informed parents that local farmers markets sell seasonal produce and that at the end of the growing season many of the markets close November 17. Parents were also told of the year-round Fresh Food Box at BronxWorks on Wednesdays from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. located at 1130 Grand Concourse. Many expressed interest in the fact that it was year round.

The tour included information about Health Bucks, the $2 coupons used to purchase fruits and vegetables at farmers markets around New York City. $10 worth of Health Bucks was distributed to the parents thanks to Council Member Vanessa L. Gibson who had secured $5000 worth of Health Bucks in an effort to encourage her constituents to purchase produce at their local farmers markets. Parents were encouraged to ask farmers about their customers favorite items at the market.

Overall, the tour was an excellent way to let parents know of the many ways their families can eat healthy. Many community members approached the parents and asked about Health Bucks, and how they can join the tour. When asked if they would attend these events in the future, all the PS35 parents responded “Yes!” One parent said she liked the tour because she discovered a nearby farmers market and liked the idea of going as a group. Another parent appreciated the information about the Fresh Food Box, while another parent stated, “I really like the fact that we can have so many fresh fruits and vegetables.”

Bronx Health REACH will be hosting more farmers market tours in November with various schools in the Bronx. Each tour will consist of a brief nutrition education workshop, resource giveaways, and an opportunity for each participant to spend $10 worth of Health Bucks on fresh produce from the market.

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