Loaves & Fishes/Friendship Trays Nutrition Policy – Fighting Hunger with Intention
At Loaves & Fishes/Friendship Trays, fighting hunger is our mission but fighting hunger with intention is our goal.
Providing nutritious food for our food insecure neighbors is at the forefront of Loaves & Fishes/Friendship Trays and with the advent of COVID, we realized how much more important it is to feed people well. For the last two years, Loaves & Fishes/Friendship Trays’ specialty diet boxes, developed by our Registered Dietitian, have been a highly requested item among individuals suffering from a heart condition and/or diabetes. The increase in these requests, along with the alarming rates of chronic diseases in Mecklenburg County were eyeopeners for our staff. We knew that we had to take on the responsibility of feeding our neighbors with intention. To make our vision clearer, the Loaves & Fishes/Friendship Trays senior leadership team approved a nutrition policy. Developed and implemented by Chasidie Glover, Nutrition Services Coordinator for Loaves & Fishes/Friendship Trays, the nutrition policy aims to educate and guide food purchasing, distribution, and even food donations.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Feeding America suggest that food insecure individuals have a high risk of developing chronic health conditions or are unable to properly manage a chronic condition.
As Chasidie shared,
“Reading this statement was impactful but what shocked me more are our very own statistics. Since being with Loaves & Fishes/Friendship Trays, I have served many individuals who mention they have diabetes, kidney disease, high blood pressure or all three. I can’t help but notice that the people who need healthier food the most are the people who can least afford it. Some clients depend on ramen noodles and soda to fill their tummies for the night. However, soda and ramen offer little to no nutrients that will help them manage their chronic condition. As a Registered Dietitian, it is my duty to advocate for access to healthy food for all individuals. This is what fueled the idea of adopting a nutrition policy for our food pantries.”
Join our effort to ensure all neighbors of Mecklenburg County have access to food that not only fills their bellies but also makes them feel better!