The Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) Division of Nutrition and Physical Activity has been awarded a 2018 USDA Farm to School Grant to help promote access to locally sourced food in schools. ISDH was one of 73 recipients selected from 290 applicants nationwide. ISDH will receive $98,468 over two years for the Indiana State Department of Agriculture’s Indiana Grown program, which aims to promote regular access to Indiana-sourced foods in school cafeterias and increase participation in other farm-to-school activities. As part of the grant, ISDH will work with its partners, including the Indiana State Department of Agriculture, Indiana Department of Education and Purdue Extension, to create resources for schools, teachers, administrators, parents, farmers, organizations and funding agencies to reduce real and perceived barriers to using locally sourced food in schools. A promotional campaign will be developed to engage all of Indiana’s 583 school food authorities, and all the agencies’ farm-to-school programs will be incorporated into one monthly planner to help schools access more resources. These funds will also provide continued support for Indiana’s 11 Farm to School Action Committees. Made up of school food service directors, administrators, teachers, farmers, parents, community organizations, local health departments and county extension agents, these committees work on farm-to-school projects at the school or district level. This grant will also enable new committees to be formed throughout the state. As part of its continuing efforts to help schools provide better nutrition to Indiana’s schoolchildren, ISDH’s Division of Nutrition and Physical Activity recently published the second edition of the Indiana Healthy Schools Toolkit. This toolkit helps schools expand their nutrition education efforts and the policies, systems and environments that influence the food Hoosier children eat. The division has also sponsored a consultant to provide direct assistance to food service directors and school cafeteria staff to enhance school nutrition environments. To access the Indiana Healthy Schools Toolkit, visit ISDH’s website at https://www.in.gov/isdh/25142.htm. For more information on Farm to School in Indiana, go to https://www.purdue.edu/dffs/farmtoschool/. Visit the ISDH at https://www.in.gov/isdh/ for important health and safety information, or follow them on Twitter at @StateHealthIN and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/isdh1.
August 16th, 2018|Local News|