According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there are roughly 76 million students in the country. These students range from nursery school to college. Many attend campuses that lack healthy food options that are readily available. This issue has come to theforefront through the “Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution” show, and with the government stepping in to make legislative changes. But the most effective way to inspire change in the foods being offered begins locally.
“When schools do not provide healthy food options, students and parents really need to get involved,” explains Jolly Backer, the chief executive officer of Fresh Healthy Vending (www.freshvending.com), a company specializing in vending machines that are stocked with all-healthy options. “Many people are making effective changes on campuses across the country. The power in making this happen lies with those who attend the school or, in the case of younger children, with their parents.”
For those who would like to see their school campus provide healthier food options, whether in a primary school or on a college campus, there are several things they can do. Here are five tips for getting healthy foods on campus:
1. Get involved. When schools are aware that the students and parents want healthy food options to be available, they will be more likely to instigate change to bring it about. Rather than just wishing for healthier options, people need to be proactive.
2. Involve others. There are likely many other students and parents who feel the same way. Find others who want the same thing, and form a group or task force. The more people involved in asking for change, the better.
3. Get creative. There will always be some people who support the cause but don’t want to be active in the group. Get them to sign a petition for healthier food options, write a letter to the campus newspaper or school board, etc.
4. Employ departments. Each school or college campus has particular departments that may join the effort to bring about healthy food options. Try to work with them to make it happen. Start with such groups as the student body government and health department.
5. Be consistent. Although fighting for change can become frustrating if results don’t happen soon enough, it is important to remain polite and professional. Also, don’t easily give up. Sometimes it takes a while for changes to work their way through the proper channels.
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“Healthy food options, even for those on the run, should be readily available,” added Backer. “So it is really just a matter of people letting their schools and colleges know that it is indeed wanted.”
Fresh Healthy Vending is a company that has made it their mission to help revolutionize the vending machine industry. All of their machines are dual-climate controlled and completely stocked with healthy food options. Some of the food options that their machines offer include 100-percent fruit juices, soymilk, fresh fruits and vegetables, natural cereal bars, yogurt, all-natural baked chips, tea, and more.
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