Date: Tuesday, March 28

Time: 2:20 PM - 3:20 PM

Room: Magnolia

Recess Before Lunch: Changing Food Consumption Patterns in Elementary School Youth

  • Christina Hall, Executive Director, OC Food Access Coalition

  • Jerry Rivero, Program Manager, OC Food Access Coalition

  • Moderator: Heather Berkoben, Community Nutrition Adviser, Dairy Council of California

In Orange County, families face high rates of food insecurity, which is why the OC Farm to School Task Force has expanded its F2S activities beyond nutrition education and local food purchasing to conversations around Recess Before Lunch Programming. For the OC F2S Taskforce, it has become important not only to promote nutrition education and local food purchasing but also address an important health crisis in food insecurity by addressing the importance of proper food consumption and healthy eating habits of elementary school age children. National and local case studies have shown that RBL could be used as a measure to combat hunger by promoting healthier eating habits at schools and as an effective way to decrease plate waste. Studies show that RBL increases nutritional consumption, improves classroom behavior and provides positive social and health related outcomes for students. Changes in traditional lunch time scheduling come with its challenges, however. The shift from traditional lunch programming to RBL requires several advocacy fronts to create policy changes which can address a holistic approach to student success to include improvements in nourishment at schools. This workshop would raise awareness of food security initiatives such as RBL, highlight effective strategies and challenges faced by schools looking to champion the change to RBL.