Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has announced Team Nutrition Training Grants to 19 States to help children develop good nutrition and physical activity habits for healthier lifestyles. Nearly $5.5 million in funding will support efforts to help elementary and secondary schools applying for the HealthierUS School Challenge, a key component of First Lady Michelle Obama's Let's Move initiative.
Team Nutrition Training Grants help States provide schools with nutrition education materials and resources for children and parents as well as technical assistance and training for school food service providers and communities. Team Nutrition is a key component in the efforts of USDA's Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) to improve children's lifelong eating and physical activity habits by incorporating the principles of the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and MyPyramid in school meals.
During the two year grant period, states will provide training and technical assistance to school food service staff in making school meals healthier, including ways to include more fruits and vegetables, whole grains and low-fat milk products on the menu. Additionally, grantees will be promoting the use of USDA foods and also teaching children skills needed to make healthful food choices through hands-on nutrition education experiences and providing parents with information on how to support healthy habits at home.
The 19 States receiving grants are: Alabama ($121,559), Alaska ($245,061), California ($317,990), Colorado ($271,472), Idaho ($297,053), Illinois ($316,310), Indiana ($92,568), Iowa ($349,835), Kansas ($315,435), Maine ($349,721), Maryland ($291,786), Michigan ($346,048), Mississippi ($254,680), Montana ($349,967), New Jersey ($340,250), Ohio ($335,350), Pennsylvania ($328,372), Washington ($188,060), and Wisconsin ($326,228).