Summer educational program expands to help address food insecurity

June 2, 2022

The Summer Health Lunch Bunch program teaches children and their families about health topics such as nutrition and physical activity. Goshen Health started the program in 2018 to provide hands-on activities and to promote foods that taste good and are good for you. More than 4,175 students have participated in the program since it began.

This year, the program is being expanded to help address food insecurity. Goshen Health is partnering with Cultivate Culinary, a nonprofit food rescue organization, to pilot the distribution of weekend backpack meals through Summer Health Lunch Bunch. Every Friday, approximately 300 backpacks will be distributed on a first-come, first-serve basis at select lunch sites in Goshen. Backpacks contain six nutritionally balanced meals to help students meet potential food needs throughout the weekend. The program runs from the week of June 6 to July 22.

"We appreciate working with our schools and other community partners to help teach children about health and nutrition," said Randy Christophel, Goshen Health President and Chief Executive Officer. "In addition, this year, by adding the collaboration with Cultivate Culinary, we expect to help meet needs that may otherwise be unmet."

The Summer Health Lunch Bunch program will be offered at 15 different sites. To find a site, go https://goshenhealth.com/health-library/ce-nutrition-programs.

School partners: Goshen, Elkhart, Wa-Nee, Warsaw and Wawasee school systems

Community partners: Center for Healing & Hope, Elkhart City Parks, Elkhart County Health Department, Elkhart County Parks Department, Goshen Farmers Market, Live Well Kosciusko, Medical Nutrition Therapy Department of Goshen Health, Minority Health Coalition and Purdue Extension of both Elkhart and Kosciusko County

For more information about Goshen Health’s school and community nutrition education programs, visit LiveVibrantly.com or call (574) 364-2496.