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Posted: Thursday, June 26th 2014 at 10:15am

Child care centers in 11 N. Ga. counties eligible for healthy eating, lifestyle grants

By Staff
EMAIL STORY CONTACT EDITOR PRINT
ATLANTA – Child care centers in eleven north Georgia counties - including Jackson, Barrow and Gwinnett - are eligible for state grants under a program targeting healthy eating and lifestyles.

The Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning (DECAL) is offering Farm to Georgia Preschool grants to child care learning centers located in Barrow, Clarke, Clayton, Cobb, DeKalb, Fulton, Gwinnett, Jackson, Newton, Rockdale, and Walton counties.

The grants are for centers that participate in the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) and have not previously participated in "Caregivers Promoting Healthy Habits."

The program, made possible from the USDA Food and Nutrition Service, will include activities and training on local food procurement, field trips to area farms and farmer’s markets, edible gardens, cooking with kids, taste tests, and nutrition education. Grants include up to $2,000 to support Farm to Georgia Preschool activities, in addition to technical assistance, training, and other resources.

“We are honored and excited to receive this funding to continue our efforts to promote better nutrition in child care programs across Georgia,” said DECAL Interim Commissioner Amy Jacobs. “Children spend a significant amount of time in child care settings and teaching them to try to enjoy fresh, healthy foods can set them up for a lifetime of healthy behaviors.”

Jennifer Popadiuk, Nutrition Project Manager, said the grants allow DECAL to expand its innovative campaign to introduce fresh, local fruits and vegetables to children during their most formative years.

“We would like to see more fresh and local produce served in in early child care settings because this enables us to teach children to enjoy fruits and vegetables while their dietary preferences are still forming,” said Popadiuk.

Grant applications will be available beginning July 1 at: http://decal.ga.gov/Nutrition/NutritionServicesMain.aspx

Interested child care centers may attend one of two Farm to Preschool Workshops on Wednesday, July 2, 2014, at Georgia Piedmont Technical College in Clarkston, or Tuesday, July 8, 2014, at the City of Winder Community Center. Registration is required. For more information call 404-463-4093 or e-mail jennifer.popadiuk@decal.ga.gov.

Associated Categories: Business News, Local/State News

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