By Eden Stiffman
Curt Ellis helped start FoodCorps, a nonprofit whose AmeriCorps program teaches kids about healthy food and nutrition through hands-on activities like gardening and cooking.
Measuring Impact: “But FoodCorps measures its success not by its alumni’s achievements but by its results in schools. The charity assesses children’s attitudes toward fruits and vegetables before and after they encounter the program. According to its surveys, seven of 10 students at FoodCorps schools reported trying new foods and display a more positive attitude toward produce. The organization also tracks whether schools are measurably healthier at the end of the school year by looking at factors such as whether they planted school gardens, developed healthier lunch recipes, and redesigned lunchrooms to more effectively promote produce.”
Growing in the Future: “Looking ahead, Mr. Ellis sees lots of room for growth. Currently concentrated in urban areas, FoodCorps is working to get better at serving rural and tribal communities and is placing more emphasis on identifying standout local leaders to nurture. More than 80 percent of members are serving in the state where they lived prior to beginning service.”