Healthy Food Donations Encouraged with ‘Food Drive 5’

Beyond Health, Boy Scouts team up for annual October Food Drive  

A collaborative of community health-minded organizations is joining forces with the Boy Scouts of America, Bay-Lakes Council to promote healthy donations during the upcoming Scouting for Food food drive.

Beyond Health, an extension of the 2012-15 Brown County Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP), is working with the scouts to promote the “Food Drive Five,” a toolkit designed to inform individuals and organizations about the importance of donating healthful food.

Local Boy Scouts will begin distributing food collection bags to area homes Saturday, Oct. 10, to be picked up Saturday, Oct. 17. Homes that do not receive bags are welcome to donate at area Festival Foods locations. No matter where individuals donate, organizers are asking them to give items included in the Food Drive Five:
• Protein foods: Peanut butter, nuts, seafood and poultry
• Fruit: Packed in juice, dried or sauced
• Low-sodium soups with protein and vegetables
• Whole grain cereal and pasta
• Colorful vegetables

“We know there are people in our community who rely mostly or entirely on food pantries to feed their families,” said Karen Early, Nutrition Education Program Coordinator for the Brown County UW-Extension. “Our goal is to give people who donate food an easy-to-remember framework for ensuring their generous gifts are as healthy as they can be.”

In Brown County, household food pantry utilization increased 31 percent between 2009 and 2014. The number of children receiving pantry food increased by 15 percent during this timeframe, and one in four Brown County Children currently live in poverty.

As families increasingly depend on donated foods for a greater share of their nutritional needs, the quality of those foods becomes more important, Early said. Local research has shown that one third of all donated pantry food is of low nutritional value, damaged or severely outdated. Beyond Health will monitor this year’s Scouting for Food donations to assess whether the Food Drive Five message is making a difference.

Food donors and drive organizers are encouraged to check out the Food Drive Five Toolkit and other resources on the Brown County UW-Extension Wisconsin Nutrition Education Program (WNEP) website for more information. For information on Scouting visit www.baylakesbsa.org.

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About Beyond Health
Beyond Health is an extension of the 2012-15 Brown County Community Health Improvement Plan (CHIP), which is a joint effort of community organizations lending their resources and expertise to identify and implement strategic objectives to create a positive impact on the health and wellness of area residents. CHIP has three primary focuses: dental health; alcohol and substance abuse; and food and nutrition. The De Pere Health Department, Brown County Health Department, Bellin Health, St. Vincent and St. Mary’s hospitals, and Leanne Zhu, Associate Professor of Human Biology at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, have come together in support of CHIP and the Beyond Health effort.  

About Scouting
Bay-Lakes Council serves over 23,000 youth members throughout 35 counties in Northeastern Wisconsin and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Its mission is to instill values in youth, teaching the important life skills of service, leadership and character development. Since Scouting for Food began in 1987 over 12,100,000 containers of food have been collected helping millions of families. For more information about Scouting in the area contact Bay-Lakes Council: 920-734-5705 or www.baylakesbsa.org.