01 8331554          info@greenlanes.ie

Food Dudes

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Greenlanes will participate in the Food Dudes Healthy Eating Programme, a programme available nationally to primary schools in Ireland.

The Food Dudes Programme aims to encourage children to eat more fruit and vegetables. Health experts recommend that children (and adults) eat at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables each day. However, many children (and adults) currently eat less than this.

The programme receives financial support from the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and the European Union through the School Fruit and Vegetables Scheme – under which the EU has made funds available for the purchase and distribution of fruit and vegetables to schools.

The programme is managed in Ireland by Bord Bia. It is based on a very successful large-scale study developed by the Food & Activity Research Unit at Bangor University, Wales. It was trialled in schools in England, Wales and has reached more than 3,100 schools in Ireland with outstanding and long-lasting results. The programme in Ireland received a “counteracting obesity” award from the World Health Organisation (WHO) in 2006.

There are two levels of participation in the programme within the school; for junior classes and for senior classes. The programme involves two phases. During Phase 1, pupils will be offered the opportunity to participate in tasting days, where they will taste a different fruit and vegetable on each occasion. They will be rewarded with small prizes for eating these foods. Phase 2 then encourages children to bring in and eat fruit and vegetables from home as part of their daily lunch diet. Please see overleaf for some suggestions and lunchbox ideas.

The aim of the programme is to encourage children to try fruit and vegetables and come to enjoy the taste of the foods. They also come to think of themselves as healthy eaters who enjoy fruit and vegetables. The programme takes only a small amount of time in school but will hopefully result in health benefits for all who participate. Your child will automatically be included in this programme. However, if for any reason you do not want your child to take part (e.g. if they are allergic to a certain type of fruit or vegetable), we would be grateful if you could inform the school.

We hope you and your child have fun with the Food Dudes!

Cathy

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