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TFC on the Hill: Making the Case for Nutrition Education in D.C.

The Tisch Food Center, along with the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and the National Alliance for Nutrition and Activity, are calling on Congress to increase funding for Team Nutrition in the FY17 Appropriations Bill. Read more about our case for strengthening nutrition education.

By: Ali Hard, Tisch Scholar

This week, Assistant Executive Director Claire Uno and I joined partners from the National Alliance for Nutrition and Activity (NANA) to call on Members of Congress to support nutrition education in schools.  At this time of year, Congress works on appropriations bills, which determine how the federal budget will be spent for the coming year.  For us, this meant an opportunity to advocate for financial support for nutrition education, a cost-effective but historically underfunded obesity prevention strategy.  Through collaboration with the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the Center for Science in the Public Interest, and Teachers College alumna Lorelei DiSogra, EdD, R.D. from the United Fresh Produce Association, we asked Members of Congress to increase funding for Team Nutrition.  Team Nutrition is the only dedicated federal nutrition education and technical assistance program that supports schools and childcare providers through training, resources, and grants. 

Team Nutrition has been authorized at $25 million annually (which is the maximum amount that can be spent each year), but has been underfunded at $15.5 million for the past few years.  Even if it were funded at the maximum amount, this would only provide $0.50 per child participating in the National School Lunch Program and the Child and Adult Care Food Program.  With over one third of children and adolescents are overweight or obese, we can no longer afford to underfund this cost-effective program.  

We were able to communicate our nutrition education message to several Members of Congress who are responsible for the appropriations process.  Many congressional staff members are not familiar with nutrition education and its critical role in supporting healthy eating for a lifetime.  We discussed the importance of combining healthy meal programs with nutrition education so that kids not only have access to healthy options, but also enjoy and feel confident in making healthy choices.  So far we have received the support of Congresswoman Chellie Pingree (D-ME) and Congressman Charles Rangel (D-NY), who formerly represented Teachers College as part of his district.  We hope that more Members of Congress will join Congresswoman Pingree and Congressman Rangel in supporting Team Nutrition as a key step in ensuring a healthy, successful generation of American children. 

You can access the full brief on Team Nutrition on our Resources page


Want to learn more about us?! Subscribe to our quarterly newsletter, the Tisch 'Dish, to stay up to date with our latest events and research. And don't forget to find TFC on Twitter and Facebook

Published Tuesday, Mar. 15, 2016

TFC on the Hill: Making the Case for Nutrition Education in D.C.

By: Ali Hard, Tisch Scholar

This week, Assistant Executive Director Claire Uno and I joined partners from the National Alliance for Nutrition and Activity (NANA) to call on Members of Congress to support nutrition education in schools.  At this time of year, Congress works on appropriations bills, which determine how the federal budget will be spent for the coming year.  For us, this meant an opportunity to advocate for financial support for nutrition education, a cost-effective but historically underfunded obesity prevention strategy.  Through collaboration with the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the Center for Science in the Public Interest, and Teachers College alumna Lorelei DiSogra, EdD, R.D. from the United Fresh Produce Association, we asked Members of Congress to increase funding for Team Nutrition.  Team Nutrition is the only dedicated federal nutrition education and technical assistance program that supports schools and childcare providers through training, resources, and grants. 

Team Nutrition has been authorized at $25 million annually (which is the maximum amount that can be spent each year), but has been underfunded at $15.5 million for the past few years.  Even if it were funded at the maximum amount, this would only provide $0.50 per child participating in the National School Lunch Program and the Child and Adult Care Food Program.  With over one third of children and adolescents are overweight or obese, we can no longer afford to underfund this cost-effective program.  

We were able to communicate our nutrition education message to several Members of Congress who are responsible for the appropriations process.  Many congressional staff members are not familiar with nutrition education and its critical role in supporting healthy eating for a lifetime.  We discussed the importance of combining healthy meal programs with nutrition education so that kids not only have access to healthy options, but also enjoy and feel confident in making healthy choices.  So far we have received the support of Congresswoman Chellie Pingree (D-ME) and Congressman Charles Rangel (D-NY), who formerly represented Teachers College as part of his district.  We hope that more Members of Congress will join Congresswoman Pingree and Congressman Rangel in supporting Team Nutrition as a key step in ensuring a healthy, successful generation of American children. 

You can access the full brief on Team Nutrition on our Resources page


Want to learn more about us?! Subscribe to our quarterly newsletter, the Tisch 'Dish, to stay up to date with our latest events and research. And don't forget to find TFC on Twitter and Facebook

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