July 11, 2022–On May 4, President Biden announced that the White House will hold a Conference on Nutrition, Hunger, and Health in September 2022. Last convened in 1969, this conference advanced policy changes that expanded essential programs such as SNAP, WIC, and the school breakfast program. The upcoming conference is a critical opportunity to build a food system that nourishes the health, education, and sense of belonging of every child in our country. FoodCorps looks to participate in this historic conference by highlighting policies that support our children through food education.
To elevate this important opportunity, FoodCorps has launched a #TimeForFoodEd campaign. As part of this campaign, FoodCorps has:
- Hosted three regional listening sessions, engaging a diverse group of education and nutrition leaders who work to feed and teach our children every day. Participants emphasized the necessity of school meals for all, making nutrition and food education part of the school day, upgrading school kitchens, and increasing the representation of BIMPOC leadership in school nutrition careers.
- Led an organizational sign-on letter to President Biden about the priorities of food education and school meals for all at the upcoming conference. The letter has been signed by national, state, and local organizations and school districts.
- Launched a grassroots petition, currently signed by more than 1,000 supporters who urge President Biden to support placing a food educator in every school.
- Collected stories about the power of food education to share with the White House.
- Engaged social media audiences in learning about the upcoming conference and sharing stories of why it’s #TimeForFoodEd, reaching more than 100,000 followers.
The White House has shared five pillars that will define the scope of the conference and guide actionable next steps. FoodCorps and our network of partners and supporters believe that food and nutrition education in schools is a thread that runs through and sustains all five. We look forward to addressing these pillars with the release of a special report on July 15. This comprehensive report will include specific policy recommendations, legislative actions, and administrative requests, and well as synthesized feedback from the FoodCorps listening sessions.
“It is our goal that by 2030, every child will have access to food education and nourishing food in school,” said Curt Ellis, Co-Founder and CEO of FoodCorps. “As we embark on new initiatives with policymakers, let’s reimagine our nation’s 100,000 school cafeterias serving 30 million children, as places of joy, justice, health, and belonging. They’re kids. We’re the grown-ups. And we owe it to them to show how much we care.”
Leading up to the conference, FoodCorps will continue our outreach to policymakers and stakeholders to advance our policy priorities. Learn more about FoodCorps’ policy platform at www.foodcorps.org/policy-action-center.
FoodCorps partners with schools and communities to nourish kids’ health, education, and sense of belonging so that every child, in every school, experiences the joy and power of food. Our AmeriCorps members serve alongside educators and school nutrition leaders to provide kids with nourishing meals, food education, and culturally affirming experiences with food that celebrate and nurture the whole child. Building on this direct service, FoodCorps advocates for policy change, grows networks, and develops leaders in service of every kid’s health and wellbeing. Our goal is that by 2030, every child will have access to food education and nourishing food in school.