Salad Bar Nation Challenge
Whole Kids Foundation, in conjunction with Let's Move Salad Bars to Schools, announced today the launch of Salad Bar Nation, a public awareness and fundraising campaign committed to improving the nation's nutrition by challenging Americans to eat a salad every day. The campaign will make it possible for one million children to have salads every day at school by funding 2,013 salad bars for schools across the country.
The campaign hopes to raise $5 million through text-to-give and online fundraising in addition to an initial pledge of $1.5 million from Whole Kids Foundation, which will fund salad bars in more than 570 schools across the country including all elementary schools in Anchorage, Ala., Clarksville, Tenn.and Douglas County, Colo. To make a donation to help bring salad bars to schools, text SALAD to 56512.
Salad Bar Nation will officially kick off in Madison, Wis., a community with a deep commitment to school nutrition and children's' health, by donating 15 salad bars to the Madison Metropolitan School District. These salad bars will serve approximately 7,500 students each day.
"We're excited to bring salad bars to our schools to support student learning," said Steve Youngbauer, Food Service Director, Madison Metropolitan School District. "Salad bars are a tremendous vehicle to present healthy food options to ensure our kids have the energy and focus they need to perform in the classroom."
"Whole Kids Foundation is thrilled to partner with Let's Move Salad Bars to Schools to help encourage all Americans to take one effective and affordable step toward a healthier nation by eating a salad every day," said Nona Evans, Whole Kids Foundation President and Executive Director. "Salad Bar Nation presents a powerful opportunity to make an impact on the choices our children make in the lunchroom by supporting schools that want to make more healthy foods available through salad bars."
More than 31.6 million children receive lunch at school each day through the National School Lunch program, and over the course of a K-12 education, one child consumes over 2,000 lunches. High school students who use a salad bar at school are more likely to eat fruits and vegetables five or more times each day according to findings from a 2010 national survey from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
In a time when many kids are eating less than one serving of fruits and veggies each day, salad is an effective way to increase the number of servings," said Chef Ann Cooper, Renegade Lunch Lady and Food Family Farming Foundation founder. "Salad makes it simple for parents and kids to get the veggies and fruit they need and there's endless opportunity for variety."
To inspire people to eat a salad every day, experiment with new ingredients and get chopping at home, the campaign's website, SaladBarNation.org, will feature a new salad each week along with simple healthy salad tips such as dressing on the side, adding a rainbow of colorful salad toppings and guidance on portion sizes for meat.
For more information on Salad Bar Nation and how to apply for a salad bar grant, visit saladbarnation.org.