Good Shepherd Food Bank’s “Nutrition Caravan” Rolls into Midcoast Hunger Prevention Program
Brunswick, ME (Sept. 12, 2013) — Clients at Thursday’s mobile pantry distribution at Midcoast Hunger Prevention Program received a healthy treat from Good Shepherd Food Bank’s new food truck. The Food Bank’s Food Mobile was followed by the organization’s new food truck for a special distribution sponsored by the National Dairy Council.
Clients at Midcoast Hunger Prevention Program who received food from the mobile pantry also received samples, recipes, and nutrition education from the food truck. Chef Matt Brown, of Browne’s Trading Company in Portland, volunteered to man the kitchen in the food truck, preparing nutritious samples using products from the mobile pantry.
“This is a great opportunity for me to give back to the community while teaching people about how to cook with nutritious foods,” said Brown. “And it’s fun to see people enjoying this great educational tool the Food Bank has in the new food truck.”
Good Shepherd Food Bank is committed to ensuring that Mainers facing hunger have access to nutritious foods. With limited resources to access food, many Maine families feel they must purchase the least expensive options, meaning they buy foods that are calorie dense, but lacking in nutrition.
Poor nutrition leads to chronic illness and increases the prevalence of obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes and other harmful diseases. These illnesses do not just affect the individual, but have significant public health impacts for the entire state. Research shows that people who suffer the health impacts of poor nutrition are sick more often, miss work or school, and have a harder time caring for their children.
“Hunger is a public health issue,” said Kristen Miale, president of Good Shepherd Food Bank. “When a family is hungry, their health suffers. Then the parents become less productive at work and the children struggle in school, so hunger is also an economic issue and an education issue. It’s pervasive.”
When food insecure families cannot afford to purchase food, they rely on food pantries and meal sites as a regular supplement to acquire food for their household. The Food Bank, together with its network of partner hunger relief agencies across the state, is working to provide Maine families with healthy, fresh foods to improve nutrition and give Mainers facing hunger the opportunity to thrive.
Courtney Kennedy, Nutrition & Education Manager, Good Shepherd Food Bank