Healthy Childhood Eating Supported by CACFP Through St. Joseph YWCA
The St. Joseph YWCA is getting ready for a celebration. It’s a celebration of children, it’s a celebration of nutritious food and it’s a celebration of equipping families with the resources they need for a better future. The 2018 National Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) Week is March 11-17, and the YWCA St. Joseph invites you to take a look at the program and the support it provides children in the area.
The YWCA administers the Child and Adult Care Food Program through the USDA to provide healthy meals and snacks to children in home based care across the region. The program allows local children to have access to the healthy foods they need to support optimal growth and development. Reimbursement for meals and snacks funnels down from USDA to the MO Department of Health and Senior Services, and then on to the YWCA St. Joseph as the local sponsor. The YWCA then administers the funds to the child care providers and coordinates the program. All providers are trained each year by the YWCA staff.
In 2017, the Child and Adult Care Food Program:
- Monitored 324,328 meals to children in 55 home providers in 21 counties around the region
- Of meals monitored, 99 percent met nutrition guidelines and qualified for financial reimbursement to the provider
National CACFP Week is designed to raise awareness about the work of the USDA’s CACFP in combating childhood and adult hunger. The CACFP works through the YWCA St. Joseph to ensure that healthy food arrives on the tables for children at child care centers, homes and after-school programs, as well as in adult care centers.
The Shelter offers a safe place to families in crisis, and CACFP helps meet nutritional needs of those families when they arrive at the Shelter. Likewise, families in transition can access the services of Discovery Child Care. One of the challenges to steady employment is finding licensed, affordable childcare while parents are engaged in readying themselves for employment through education or job skills training. Discovery Child Care offers a safe and positive atmosphere for children to spend their time while parents are preparing for a brighter future. In turn, CACFP ensures that children receive the healthy foods that are so critical for their development.
Nationally, the USDA’s CACFP provides healthy foods to 4.2 million children and 130,000 adults. It is a critical tool for closing the gap in helping children and adults receive the nutrition necessary for good health.
To learn more about CACFP or to apply to the program, contact the YWCA of St. Joseph. We look forward to hearing from you!