Second Harvest Food Bank of Southeast North Carolina has always emphasized the important role that nutrition plays in fighting hunger. It’s not just that people go without — they go without the healthy foods that matter most.
As a proud member of Feeding America, the Food Bank knows that our community needs consistent access to nutritious foods. According to Feeding America’s Hunger in America 2014 Study, 79 percent of individuals purchase inexpensive, unhealthy foods. A lack of proper nutrition can cause serious health impacts, especially for seniors. Of households served by Feeding America with an adult aged 50 or older, 41 percent have diabetes and 70% have high blood pressure.
With this information in mind, the Food Bank has launched a new nutrition education program. The Charlie Cart is a mobile kitchen unit that will be used to give regular demonstrations of healthy, quick recipes that families can use in their own homes. The Charlie Cart will be programmed at Produce Market Saturdays and other events throughout the year to encourage participants to incorporate fresh, nutritious fruits and vegetables into their diets.
“We’re proud to have support from Cumberland Community Foundation in launching this new program to help improve the health of seniors in our area,” said Ron Pringle, Second Harvest’s director. “With increased nutrition education, we want to encourage others to make healthy decisions while still being cost-effective for the family budget.”
The new mobile kitchen is equipped with a small convection oven, cook top, and rinse station, and included the necessary utensils and to deliver cooking lessons in one place. On wheels, the Charlie Cart can bring helpful workshops to those interested in learning a few new recipes that swap less healthy ingredients and seasonings for those high in nutrition.
This program is made possible by the Cornelia “Neil” Bullock Wilkins Charitable Endowment Fund – Healthcare.