- Author: Javier Miramontes
- Contributor: Evelyn Morales
- Contributor: Nath Say
- Editor: Shelby MacNab
While students were on summer vacation, local seniors got an opportunity to go “back to school” with UC Calfresh.
UC CalFresh Nutrition Educators have been busy teaching senior nutrition classes in Fresno County this summer. The curricula taught included: Eat Smart, Live Strong (ESLS) and Plan Shop Save and Cook (PSSC).
Our signature senior curriculum, ESLS, focuses on teaching seniors to include a variety of fruits and vegetables daily, as well as the importance of getting 30 minutes of physical activity every day.
In each of our lessons, senior participants learned to make low-cost nutritious meals, save money while shopping, and easy ways to incorporate physical activity into their day.
Special thanks to all of our partnering agencies for making these classes possible. Sites that offered our Senior Nutrition Education Series include: Senior Citizen's Village, Ted C. Wills Community Center, Sunnyside Glen Apartments, Mosqueda Community Center, Selma Senior Center and Pinedale Community Center.
If you'd like to bring nutrition education to seniors in your community, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or comment below.
- Author: Sandra Ortega
- Photographer: DeAnna Molinar
- Contributor: Evelyn Morales
Thursday Night's at Plaza Terrace Emergency Housing are Family Nights and the families who reside there love it!
Patricia Williams of Fresno County Dept. of Social Services and volunteers: Michelle Eskew, Fresno County Chief Deputy District Attorney- Sexual Assault & Domestic Violence Unit, Sergeant Nina Jacobs of the Fresno Police Department Family Justice Bureau-Sex Crimes Unit, and Pam LeSage of the City of Fresno have committed their time to provide the families with an opportunity to have fun, get active, and eat a healthy meal together.
A tether ball in the courtyard provides a glimpse of the vision that Patricia Williams has for the complex. Bicycles, balls, and board games for the children and a weight room for the adults are just some examples of what the staff and volunteers at Plaza Terrace are providing for the families to use.
“We want to give these families a different view of the police department and D.A's office. Some crimes go unreported because of people's mistrust of these departments. We are here to help them. We want them to trust us and not be afraid to ask for help, if they ever need it.” – Nina Jacobs
On Thursday nights these volunteers purchase and cook healthy meals, while volunteer Pam LeSage makes desserts with help from the children.
Patricia Williams says, “One thing that I've noticed is that our tenants need help with managing their resources and choosing healthier meal options for their children. It's also important for them to be physically active to help prevent any illnesses that can be caused by obesity.”
Building on the culture of wellness, UC CalFresh educators Evelyn Morales and Sandra Ortega joined in the family nights to teach residents the Plan, Shop, Save, and Cook nutrition education series.
The participants in the class really enjoyed learning how to plan meals, read nutrition food labels, and compare unit prices. They especially enjoyed learning to make and taste testing healthy recipes. They even had Zumba lessons as part of their classes courtesy of Evelyn Morales!
The last day of class was a time for celebration. What better way to end this series than by cooking some of the healthy recipes the participants tasted and enjoyed during UC CalFresh nutrition education classes? The menu on that night was: spinach salad with yogurt dressing, spinach lasagna with meat sauce and corn muffins (made by the children). The meal was a big hit! The Plaza Terrace volunteers did a fantastic job putting it all together.
“I never knew that cooked Spinach tastes so good!” “Can we have more?” were just a few comments made that evening.
This was a great collaboration and a perfect example of the ways partnership in the community can create lifelong change for the residents of Fresno County!
- Author: Nancy R. Zumkeller
- Contributor: DeAnna Molinar
Over the course of 5 weeks, Ben Benavidez Elementary School parents committed to learning about healthy habits for themselves and their families. The graduates of the Plan, Shop, Save and Cook nutrition education series practiced reading and understanding food labels, shopping for sale items while using a written grocery list, and planning healthy meals for the family.
"Now...my kids [know] how to read nutrition facts, they are checking every label in our kitchen!" -Maria Hernandez.
Planning meals ahead of time has been a real time saver for participant Rosa Hernandez, "It really helps my day when I don't have to go to the store all the time to get what I need."
The recipes prepared at each lesson demonstrated how healthy meals do not have to be expensive or time consuming. Participants are now very familiar with the MyPlate model and plan to utilize it when thinking about their next food choice.
Principal Alan Macedo joined the class weekly to encourage parents to continue on this journey of health and well-being.
These parents are definitely role models for the school and community as they put into practice what they have learned from the UC CalFresh nutrition education program.
UC CalFresh also works with teachers to provide nutrition education to students. This comprehensive approach to nutrition helps ensure that families in the Central Valley are healthy and thriving!
- Author: Shelby MacNab
- Contributor: Nath Say
- Contributor: kristi sharp
Last Friday our nutrition educators had the opportunity to provide a mini-workshop to the Adult Transition Program, at Fresno Unified Food Services.
The Adult Transition Program serves 18-22 year old's with functional skills education.
These young adults loved learning more about choosing low-fat milk more often! We anticipate offering a class series soon as a follow up to this workshop.
Here's a picture of our nutrition educator, Kristi Sharp, in action teaching about calcium and low-fat milk consumption.
Would you like UC CalFresh to provide nutrition education? Give us a call at: 559-241-7532.
- Editor: Shelby MacNab
- Author: DeAnna Molinar
- Photographer: Lily Phanthachack
- Photographer: Nancy R. Zumkeller
Schools out, it’s been over 100 degrees for almost two weeks straight, and the days are long! But for 50 families in the city of Fresno, that won’t stop them from having a healthy summer! These families are participating in a no-cost Healthy Lifestyle Fitness Camp (HLFC).
For the past four years, The City of Fresno Parks and Recreation Department has collaborated with the UC CalFresh Nutrition Education Program to provide a summer camp that promotes well-fed, healthy, secure families.
Campers this year are wearing camouflage style t-shirts with the quote: “I don’t do it because it’s easy, I do it because I am worth it.”
The camp, which runs 6 weeks in length, has one mission: to provide a fun-filled summer fitness program that promotes weight loss, positive self-image, and the importance of embracing a healthy lifestyle for children 10-13 years old.
How is the accomplished? With FUN of course! Exercise, traditional and non-traditional sports, cooking classes, nutrition classes, science, water aerobics, bike riding, dance and a number of exciting field trips are all part of the HLFC experience.
The students aren’t the only ones having fun! Relay races in heels and slacks is not an uncommon sight during the weekly parent component. As part of a family-centered approach, parents are also learning how to make healthy choices on a limited budget and participating in planned physical activity. At the end of camp, parents will participate in the “Annual Parent Cook Off.” During the Cook Off, parents will re-create healthier versions of their favorite recipes, which will be judged on flavor and creativity. The winning chefs will win prizes that will help to reinforce what they have been learning at camp.
Looking for ways to have a healthy summer with your family? Here are 10 tips from choosemyplate.gov to help you and your family have your healthiest summer yet!
- Set specific activity times
- Plan ahead and track your activity
- Include work around the house
- Use what is available
- Build new skills
- Plan for all weather conditions
- Turn off the TV
- Start small
- Include other families
- Treat the family with fun physical activities
Missed out on camp this year? No problem!
UC CalFresh offers no-cost adult nutrition education classes throughout the year and nutrition education materials for low-income k-12 schools in Fresno County.
For more information contact: Shelby MacNab, email@example.com 559-241-7531