Healthy snack grants in two Waltham Schools this year

This fall, fresh fruit and vegetable snacks will be provided free twice a week to students at the Whittemore and Stanley Elementary Schools through a Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program (FFVP) Grant.  The Waltham Food Service Department applied for this grant in collaboration with Healthy Waltham.  The grant comes from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), through the Mass. Dept. of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE).  The FFVP began as a pilot project authorized by Congress in 2002 as a part of the effort to combat childhood obesity by helping children learn to make healthier food choices.  The Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008, also known as the Farm Bill, permanently authorized the program nationwide. The program is currently limited to elementary schools with 50% or more participation in free and reduced-price lunch. Schools are encouraged to support the program with classroom activities that focus on healthy eating and the importance of fresh fruits and vegetables.

Walk & Talk with Elected Officials

Back for its second summer, “Walk and Talk with Elected Officials” kicked off on July 6.  Organized by Healthy Waltham, the event combines physical exercise with the opportunity to speak with our elected officials.  The event takes place Monday evenings at Leary Field on Bacon Street from 6:00-7:15 pm.  All are welcome.

Please see the coverage in the Daily News Tribune by clicking here.

Healthy Waltham Report to the Community

In 2004, a team of people came together to study and report on on the health of the city of Waltham.  The team used various data-gathering techniques, from one-on-one interviews to public forums and focus groups, to reviews of numbers and statistics.  A report was compiled that covers various health indicators including demographic and economic factors, as well as a detailed description of the strengths (and weaknesses) of our community.  Ultimately, this report established the need for a city-wide resource and collaborative on health-related issues, and formed the basis for the formation of “Healthy Waltham.”  The report, entitled “Healthy Waltham Report to the Community,” may be downloaded here: Report to the Community.

Northeast School Taste Test

Healthy Waltham and the Waltham Public Schools kicked off our test taste program at the Northeast Elementary School in September 2008.  On the menu:  roasted summer squash, served with tomatoes and fresh herbs.  The squash that was prepared in the Northeast cafeteria was locally grown – by Waltham’s last remaining farm, the Waltham Fields Community Farm on Beaver Street.  Healthy Waltham passed out samples for kids to try; tasting is optional, but encouraged.  The goal of the taste tests is to promote new vegetable dishes in a fun way.  The event coincided with the MA Harvest for Students Week, a week celebrating locally grown produce.

The event was covered by WCVB TV Channel 5 as well as the Daily News Tribune.