During the summer months our Salem County Healthy Eating program has remained busy hosting events geared toward educating residents in health and wellness and making fresh foods more readily accessible. Throughout the year, the program hosts events like fresh food drives and their signature, “Roadshow,” presentations hosted by local emergency food pantries that feature health demonstrations and cooking lessons with healthy recipes. A recap of some of their most recent events is below!
On July 21st the program hosted a roadshow during food distribution at the United Way of Salem. Volunteer Wendy Bergen talked about the health benefits of eating zucchini, how to cook them, and taught the group how to make zucchini bread. Food pantry recipients all went home with a mini loaf of zucchini bread and tried a mini muffin to taste test. A nurse from the Salem County Health Department was also available to administer free healthcare screenings on blood pressure, diabetes, and cholesterol.
On July 28th the program hosted another roadshow at our own offices in Penns Grove and distributed fresh vegetables, such as peppers, tomatoes, corn, and cucumbers to attendees, courtesy of Bushels of Blessings Gleaning Ministry. The day’s cooking demonstration included a lesson on how to make a grilled strawberry and cucumber salad with chicken and a Greek yogurt parfait with fresh peaches. The Rutgers SNAP-ED program then gave a nutrition education presentation on how to read and understand food labels
Finally, on July 29th, Catholic Charities held a fresh food drive at the Salem City Market where shoppers could easily pick up a little extra fresh produce to donate to the hungry. Staff collected 13 pounds of vegetables ranging from tomatoes, carrots, zucchini, onions, cucumbers, and yellow squash. All donations were given to Penn Village Apartments Food Pantry in Penns Grove and were immediately distributed.
You can learn more about Catholic Charities Healthy Eating program, download healthy recipes, and learn about food insecurity in Salem County on the program’s webpage.