While the current fight about standards for school food drags on, I take some comfort in knowing that at least folks are fighting for - and paying attention to - school food. Not the case with summer camps, it seems, who have far less (if any) oversight.
This is the second year my oldest child has been able to attend summer camp, and my second summer fighting for better food at summer camp. Last summer, an article I wrote in The Huffington Post went viral, and my daughter's camp made changes. From what I hear, the changes have carried over this summer, too. Fantastic!
But who can go camp by camp and fight for better food? That'd be a never-ending task. This summer, I'm going at it from a different route. And asking you all to help.
This article camp out in The Huffington Post today. You see, I'm just fed up. I'm tired of camps, with counselors and directors I trust and pay, feeding my kid junk. I've called the camp, and the American Camp Association to voice my concern. And pushed that as far as I can. And then I do the other thing I know how to do - I write. And try to get others to push for change.
1. Read this article, in The Huffington Post, on a summer camp junk food consent form.
2. Sign this petition by Salud America!, calling on the American Camp Assocation to get rid of sugary beverages at summer camps.
3. Tweet and/or send Facebook posts to the American Camp Association and tell them you want their help to give our kids healthier lives.
Sample tweets for The American Camp Assocation:
Help us grow healthy kids @ACACamps & get rid of summer camp junk food #NoJunkInTheBunk
More play, less potato chips @ACACamps #NoJunkInTheBunk
Get rid of camp junk food @ACACamps #NoJunkInTheBunk
Sample Facebook posts on The American Camp Association page:
Be the advocate for our kids & show them camp isn't about junk food #NoJunkInTheBunk
Let's make camp about friends, experiences & summer fun #NoJunkInTheBunk
You are "advocates for quality, developmental experiences for children, youth, and families," so please advocate for better food
4. Read the Real Mom Nutrition sample script on how to aproach your child's camp, what to say and how to say it. And then call your child's camp and talk to them about your concerns and ask them to do better.
If you've followed the successes of Food Babe and Lisa Leake at 100 Days of Real Food, you know that if we use our voices, actual or virtual, we can create change. And if you haven't followed their successes then just trust me - we have real power if we work together and believe we can make change. Thank you!