I am so excited to team up with Produce for Kids for their 12th annual “Get Healthy, Give Hope” campaign, which is a national fundraiser that’s expected to reach $5 million dollars in overall donations to children’s organizations this year! The campaign runs from May through July 2014 with the support of more than 35 fresh fruit and vegetable suppliers and grocery retail partners, including GIANT, Publix, and Stop n Shop. The 24-hour preschool network, Sprout, is also partnering with Produce for Kids for the 3rd year in a row, so be sure to look for Chica’s healthy all-natural snacks on her morning show!

One of the reasons I jumped at the opportunity when I was contacted by their PR agency, was because Produce for Kids “is committed to educating families on the benefits of healthy eating and inspiring parents and children to create nutritious and delicious meals together.” Childhood obesity, and really just the obesity epidemic in general, is a cause I care deeply about. It’s not just about outside appearance—obesity is often a deadly battle against mental and emotional demons, as well as lack of nutritional and fitness education. I feel that I grew up with a huge advantage having a mother who fed us healthy, homemade meals that always featured at least one, if not two, sides of vegetables or fruit. She also refused to stock the cabinets with sugary, high-fat junk snack foods. Pretty much the only unhealthy things we ate were Goldfish, pretzels, and Diet Coke, and in the grand scheme of the junk food aisle, none of those three packaged goods even hit top 100 of worst foods. Getting McDonalds or Burger King only occurred a few times a year and it was always emphasized that it was a treat. In fact, when I was in college, my friends force fed me Fruit Loops because they couldn’t believe I had never tried them!

The way I am supporting the efforts of this campaign will be posting yummy produce-only recipes, and more importantly, offering inspiration for parents and kids to create healthy meals together! There’s also a possible GIFT CARD GIVEAWAY (still ironing out the details) so be sure to check back here on the blog, as well as on Instagram, Twitter, and my Facebook page. I guess I should also acknowledge here that I started a Tumblr blog a couple days ago but have gotten ZERO follows and ZERO likes 🙁 so at this point I’m just auto-sharing my Instagram photos on there. 

My participation for this campaign is unpaid, but I did receive a box of goodies yesterday! This gift included coupons, cups, spatulas, bamboo wooden spoons, pens, and notepads.

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