United Way’s Healthy Food for All Children Delegation announced the creation of an innovative 10-year plan which aims to get fruits and vegetables into the hands and diets of children in our community. This plan unites key research-backed strategies with the ultimate goal of reducing the number of hungry children in Dane County in half by 2023.
“Nationally, $7 out of every $10 in a low-income family’s budget are spent on basic needs such as housing, clothing, transportation and food,” notes United Way President & CEO Leslie Ann Howard. “Clearly this has implications for hunger and food security for families.”
Over 30 community leaders have worked together as a Delegation to create a plan that unifies the community in a common—increasing healthy food for all children.
The Delegation is a joint effort between United Way, Community Action Coalition for South Central Wisconsin, Inc. (CACSCW) and the Irwin A. and Robert D. Goodman Foundation.
“In resource rich Dane County, 16,270 kids in our community don’t have access to healthy food which is critical to growing strong bodies and brains,” says Chris Brockel, Chair of United Way’s Healthy Food for All Children Delegation and Food and Gardens Division Manager at CACSCW.
Recently, the Steve Stricker American Family Insurance Foundation made a $50,000 contribution to the Healthy Food for All Children plan.
This gift marked the first investment in the Healthy Food for All Children. It is also the first gift from the Steve Stricker American Family Insurance Foundation, which was founded this year by Madison-area resident and professional golfer Steve Stricker and the Fortune 500 insurance company headquartered here.
“This is an exciting opportunity,” Stricker says of the collaboration between the Foundation and United Way. “Together we can help build healthy minds and bodies so children and families can achieve their dreams, whatever they may be.”
The Foundation’s gift to this plan will place thousands of pounds of fresh fruits and vegetables in the hands of low-income families. This is an important strategy in United Way’s mission to end family homelessness so families don’t need to make the choice between putting healthy food on the table or paying rent. This gift will also fund a Nutrition Educator position which will work closely with Dane County food pantries to increase client education and overall nutritional value for the families who use pantries.
“I continue to be inspired by the community leaders we have here,” says Howard. “Together, we can create a healthy and strong future for our communities’ youngest residents through access to healthy food.”