May 10, 2019
Through a partnership with TCU, one Fort Worth school started a food sharing initiative.
by Madison Hart
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Topics: College of Science and Engineering, Latest News
by Madison Hart
North Hi Mount Elementary School launched Fort Worth Independent School District’s first food sharing initiative. The new initiative, Share Table, is part of the Sustainability Pilot Project. TCU’s Department of Nutritional Sciences is collaborating as a hands-on way to educate students about food waste and food insecurity within Tarrant County.
In Tarrant County, one in four children is food insecure, meaning that they do not know where or when they will get their next meal. Photo by Leo Wesson
“Our students and their families are proud of our school, our district and our city,” said Myrna Blanchard, principal of North Hi Mount Elementary School. “They want to take care of our community for future generations and we at NHM are excited to learn how.”
The concept of the Share Table is simple. Each school day at breakfast and lunch, students have the opportunity to donate their uneaten food, including whole fruits and intact packaged items, at the table. Students may eat any of the food at the Share Table or take it home.
All students to take from the Share Table, but it is specifically meant to serve those who struggle with food insecurity. In Tarrant County, one in four children is food insecure, meaning that they do not know where or when they will get their next meal.
Gina Jarman Hill, a TCU nutritional sciences professor and member of the Food Recovery Working Group, is optimistic the Share Table will allow the food insecure students of North Hi Mount to gain access to healthy and substantial snacks, as well as teach them how they can help decrease food waste. “Across the United States, 40 percent of the food that is produced is literally thrown away, mostly ending up in landfills,” Hill said.
Foods that are not accepted at the Share Table, including partially eaten or opened foods won’t be thrown away either. Instead, it will be composted. The compost will be used in North Hi Mount’s garden. The purpose of this program is to teach students about reducing food waste, healthy living and sustainability. “Through the Share Table and composting program, we’re teaching the students to be Earth heroes!” Hill said.
“The Share Table at North Hi Mount is a great example of a simple, effective solution,” said Micheline Hynes, nutrition services manager for the Tarrant Area Food Bank and board member for the Tarrant County Food Policy Council. “It’s great to see our children willing to make a difference and help each other by sharing food they don’t want, instead of throwing it in the trash.”
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