Archive for January, 2013

2012 State of the Detroit Child

SAM_0031The Skillman Foundation and Data Driven Detroit (D3) published an annual comprehensive data view of Detroit’s children in 2012 entitled the Detroit Child Report.  This report is a tool to glean valuable information about the state of our city’s youth.  We encourage you to read the full report, but in case you don’t have time, we have included highlights on the state of poverty and diet in Detroit’s youth:

  • The percent of children and youth in poverty increased from 34.8 percent in 1999 to 57.3 percent in 2011.
  • When adjusted to 2011 dollars, median household income in Detroit decreased by more than a third (36.8 percent) between 1999 and 2011.
  • Children increasingly live in single parent family households. In 2010, nearly 3 out of 5 households with children (59.3 percent) were headed by a single female.
  • Nearly one in four Detroit households has no access to a vehicle.
  • Students in families at 135% of the poverty line qualify for free lunch; families at 185% of the poverty line quality for reduced price lunch. The share of Detroit students qualifying for free or reduced-price lunch has never dipped below 60% and has risen steadily since the start of the recession in 2007 to a high of 82.5% today.
    • Recognizing this fact, the U.S. Department of Agriculture made Detroit Public Schools a pilot district in fall 2011 for a program to provide all students, not just those who qualify, with free meals.
  • Though an increasing number of students attended physical education classes, the percentage of DPS high school students who are overweight increased slightly over the last decade (with a high of 22.7 percent).
    • The percent of students who watched television for more than 3 hours has declined since 2005 (with a low of 44.4 percent in 2011). However, as children increasingly turn to computers and other mobile media platforms for entertainment, the decline in television viewership rates is to be expected and does not translate to more time exercising, reading, or other healthier pursuits.
  • The weekly diets of DPS high schoolers have improved in the last ten years.
    • Students reported eating more fruits and vegetables in 2011 than in previous years.
      • Even with this improvement in healthy eating habits, over 20 percent of students had not eaten fruits or vegetables within a week of taking the survey.
    • The importance of healthy eating habits is well understood by the DPS Office of School Nutrition, which has initiated the Farm to School program, currently offered at every school.
      • Each month local farmers are identified to deliver fresh fruits and/or vegetables to each school in an effort to support Michigan-based farmers and increase student exposure to fresh foods.
        • In addition, the program delivers educational opportunities in the cafeteria, classroom visits by local farmers, and school garden opportunities.

It is clear that there is much work to be done here in Detroit, but there are glimmers of hope and progress amid what may feel like a sea of overwhelming obstacles.  As you know, Cooking Matters seeks to empower families with the skills, confidence and knowledge they need to eat healthy on a tight budget.  As part of Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign, it is one of our primary goals to see the diets of children improve.  Whether this is done by educating parents to feed their children healthier foods through a Cooking Matters for Adults course, or teaching kids and teens to try healthy foods and prepare them on their own in a Cooking Matters for Teens/Kids class, we are deeply invested in this issue.

For the full report, visit: Data Driven Detroit

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January 25, 2013 at 4:13 pm Leave a comment

Inaugural Day of Service Shopping Matters Group Training

National-Day-of-ServiceThe Inaugural Day of Service is this Saturday, January 19th.

To honor this, we are hosting a group training for Shopping Matters at the Sterling Heights Walmart for potential facilitators.

For those of you interested in Shopping Matters, this event is a great way for you to receive face-to-face training so that you can lead tours of your own.  After taking part in a training, you can volunteer to lead a tour with us or organize and facilitate tours in your community!

Not familiar with Shopping Matters?

Shopping Matters is a one-time grocery store tour (built on the success of Week Five of the Cooking Matters for Adults course) that is designed to teach the primary food shoppers for households to select nutritious and low-cost ingredients.   A typical Shopping Matters tour lasts 1-2 hours and entails a grocery store tour guided by a trained expert (you!), a supplemental curriculum that elaborates on the topics covered on the tour, a post-tour survey, and a reusable shopping bag incentive.  Participants should walk away from a tour having learned key skills such as: buying fruits and vegetables on a budget, comparing prices, reading food labels, and finding whole grains.

Consider this an opportunity to participate in an ongoing service project in your community and highlight the work you do in a national context!

The training will take place this Saturday from 11am-2pm at the Sterling Heights Walmart located at 33201 Van Dyke Ave.

 To participate in the training, contact Jake Williams (jwilliams@gcfb.org) or Rebecca Blauw (rblauw@gcfb.org)

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January 15, 2013 at 10:30 am Leave a comment


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USDA Statement

This material was partially funded by the State of Michigan with federal funds from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program by way of the Michigan Nutrition Network at the Michigan Fitness Foundation. This work is supported in part by the Michigan Department of Human Services, under contract number ADMIN-10-99011. Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the Michigan Fitness Foundation or the Michigan Department of Human Services. In accordance with Federal law and USDA policy, these institutions are prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion, political beliefs or disability. To file a complaint of discrimination, write USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20250-9410 or call (800) 795-3272 (voice) or (202) 720- 6382 (TTY). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program provides nutrition assistance to people with low income. It can help you buy nutritious foods for a better diet. To find out more contact the toll free Michigan Food Assistance Program Hotline at (855) ASK-MICH. Space-Limited USDA/DHS/MNN Credit Statement This material was partially funded by the State of Michigan with federal funds from the United States Department of Agriculture Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program by way of the Michigan Nutrition Network at the Michigan Fitness Foundation. These institutions are prohibited from discriminating on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, religion, political beliefs or disability. People who need help buying nutritious food for a better diet call the toll free Michigan Food Assistance Program Hotline: (855) ASK-MICH.