The Food Bank's nutrition staff works to promote increased fruit and vegetable consumption through a series of nutrition education workshops tailored to encourage healthful eating and food preparation.
Diabetes & You
This initiative aims to help individuals improve their management of diabetes by encouraging healthy lifestyle behaviors and diabetes-friendly food options. During our last fiscal year, we hosted three four-part educations in Chenango, Cayuga, and Onondaga counties.
Our nutrition team led 18 sessions at after school sites, reaching 518 children with fun and interactive nutrition education activities aimed to reinforce healthy eating habits. Topics included healthy drinks, taste testing from all five food groups, and food trivia games.
Just Say Yes to Fruits & Vegetables (JSY)
JSY sessions lead by our nutrition staff include cooking demonstrations featuring seasonal fruits and vegetables, encouraging topics like healthy eating on a budget, easy ways to eat more produce, and meal planning.
Last year we conducted 178 JSY workshops, educating 1,980 people on the benefits of leading a healthy lifestyle.
JSY at the Farmers' Market
Since its inception in 2015, our JSY at the farmers' market program has been a crowd pleaser. This past fiscal year, Food Bank staff conducted 60 workshops over 12 weeks, giving cooking demonstrations at the Downtown Farmers' Market using locally grown produce.
1,401 people participated, each receiving coupons to purchase local produce at the market, of which more than $5,500 was redeemed for fresh fruits and vegetables at the market.
CNY Health Bucks
A total of $29,418 in CNY Health Bucks was redeemed last year by customers at farmers' markets to purchase fresh, locally grown produce. Coupons were distributed at farmers' markets as an incentive for customers using SNAP benefits and through education sessions informing individuals about the health benefits associated with a diet rich in fruits and vegetables.
CNY Health Bucks provide emergency food program guests with the opportunity to purchase produce at their local farmers' market while simultaneously supporting the local economy.