Contact: Jeff Wolfe (609) 633-2954 or (609) 433-1785 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact: Jeff Wolfe (609) 633-2954 or (609) 433-1785
(NEW BRUNSWICK) – New Jersey Department of Agriculture Division of Food and Nutrition Director Rose Tricario and Patricia Dombroski, U.S. Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service Mid-Atlantic Regional Administrator, today commemorated Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) Week with a visit to the Puerto Rican Action Board (PRAB) 18 Drift Early Childhood Center in New Brunswick, where they feed 165 children a day breakfast, lunch and a snack through the CACFP.
Tricario and Dombroski observed the youngest children eating a lunch of a turkey and cheese sandwich on a wheat Kaiser roll, broccoli with dressing, grapes and 1 percent milk.
“The Child and Adult Care Food Program gives thousands of New Jersey children the nourishment they need in their crucial years, teaching them healthy eating behaviors that will last a lifetime,” Director Tricario said. “We encourage child or adult day care centers and emergency shelters to participate in this essential program.”
The Puerto Rican Action Board, which has participated in CACFP since 1986, is a comprehensive Human Service organization and is celebrating its 45th year of providing a comprehensive range of essential services for children, youth, families and senior citizens of Central Jersey. Rita Koromi, Senior Director of Early Childhood Programs, said the CACFP helps offset food costs as well as educates staff and children on proper nutrition. She said the program’s guidance also makes it easier to provide children with healthy meals and snacks.
“The CACFP has benefited the children by teaching them how to choose healthy foods to eat,” Koromi said. “The children are encouraged to try new foods and talk about the foods they like and what are healthy and non-healthy food choices. For many children in our center, the meals they receive are the only well-balanced meals they might have for the day and/or week.”
Governor Christie proclaimed March 12-18 as Child and Adult Care Food Program Week in New Jersey, based on National CACFP Week, a national education and information campaign sponsored annually by the National CACFP Sponsors Association. The campaign is designed to raise awareness of how the Child and Adult Care Food Program works to combat hunger and bring healthy foods to the table for adults in day care and children in child care homes, centers, and in afterschool feeding programs across the country.
“It is important for children to establish healthy eating habits at a young age,” Dombroski said. “The USDA is proud to work with the Puerto Rican Action Board to provide nutritious foods that contribute to the growth and development of children.”
In New Jersey, the CACFP provides Program Sponsors funding for serving nutritious meals and healthy snacks to 85,593 eligible participants daily at 1,835 emergency shelters, day care centers, family day care homes, after-school care programs and adult day care centers, under the sponsorship of more than 700 New Jersey institutions. The program is federally funded and administered by the New Jersey Department of Agriculture.
Nationally, child care providers and centers participating in CACFP provide meals to 3.5 million children and 116,000 elderly or disabled adults each day for a total of 1.96 billion meals and snacks.
To learn more about New Jersey’s Child and Adult Care Food Program, visit http://bit.ly/1FwqWwB or call 609-984-1250.
To learn more about the New Jersey Department of Agriculture, find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/NJDeptofAgriculture and www.facebook.com/JerseyFreshOfficial or Twitter @NJDA1 and @JerseyFreshNJDA.