FoodCorps Teaches Veggie Virtues to Kids
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FoodCorps service members are taking on childhood obesity in the classroom and encouraging kids to play with healthy food. (Jan. 6)

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(NAT SOUND)"Okay let's eat some roots."THE WOMEN AT THE FRONT OF THE CLASS HAVE A TALL TASK AHEAD - TO MAKE CARROTS COOL.(NAT SOUND)"Could I have another one...""It's good but, um..."(SUPER = Gloucester, Massachusetts)THESE KINDERGARDNERS OUTSIDE BOSTON ARE ENCOURAGED TO PLAY WITH THEIR FOOD.... IN ONE OF A GROWING NUMBER OF SCHOOLS WHERE HEALTHY EATING AND FOOD EDUCATION ARE NOW PRIORITIES.BUT TEACHERS AT VETERANS MEMORIAL ELEMENTARY NEEDED REINFORCEMENTS.(NAT SOUND)"Blech."IN STEPPED SARAH RUBIN, ERIN TAYLOR AND GRACE CHERUBINO OF FOODCORPS - A NEW NATIONAL SERVICE ORGANIZATION THAT WANTS TO...(SOUNDBITE)(SUPER = Sarah Rubin, FoodCorps Service Member)"...decrease childhood obesity, to increase nutrition, to make children more mindful about their choices."(SUPER = New York City)FOODCORPS STARTED LAST SUMMER AND CHOSE 50 YOUNG ADULTS TO GIVE A YEAR OF SERVICE AT SITES ACROSS TEN STATES. IN EXCHANGE - THEY GET A SMALL STIPEND AND THE CHANCE TO CHANGE HOW AMERICAN SCHOOLCHILDREN EAT.(SOUNDBITE)(SUPER = Curt Ellis, FoodCorps Co-founder):"We've made a decision in our culture that school cafeterias should essentially serve fast food to kids."FOODCORPS CO-FOUNDER CURT ELLIS SAYS THAT'S ONE REASON WHY CHILDHOOD OBESITY HAS SKYROCKETED.(Graphic) ACCORDING TO THE CDC - 17% OF CHILDREN AGES TWO TO 19 ARE OBESE. THE RATE TRIPLED IN THE LAST THIRTY YEARS - JUST ONE GENERATION.(SOUNDBITE)(SUPER = Curt Ellis, FoodCorps Co-founder):"Food Corps responds to childhood obesity by going to the place where 31 million children get more than 1/2 their daily calories, and that's in school."WITH KIDS IN TOW, FOODCORPS LEADERS BUILD GARDENS, HARVEST CROPS... AND THEN HOLD TASTINGS...... (NAT SOUND)"I like the top of the radish..."...TEACH CLASSES... PLAY GAMES... AND COOK WITH THAT SAME FOOD.KIDS GET A COMPLETE PICTURE OF HOW TO GROW, EAT AND ENJOY FRUITS AND VEGGIES. (SUPER = Corvallis, Oregon)THE GROUP SAYS THE WIDER COMMUNITY ALSO HAS A ROLE IN FEEDING ITS CHILDREN.AMOREENA TREFF WORKS FOR FOODCORPS OUTSIDE PORTLAND AND CONNECTS THE RIGHT PEOPLE TO IMPROVE SCHOOL MENUS. (SOUNDBITE)(SUPER = Amoreena Treff, FoodCorps Service Member)"We're cataloging all the local farms that the school district can actually buy from."FOODCORPS GETS 1/3 OF ITS FUNDING FROM THE FEDERAL AMERICORPS PROGRAM, THE REST FROM DONORS AND PARTNERS.ELLIS HOPES TO DOUBLE HIS ROSTER AND EXPAND TO ALL 50 STATES.(SOUNDBITE)(SUPER = Curt Ellis, FoodCorps Co-Founder)"We had 1,229 people apply from all around the country to serve. This is a poverty level service position."(NAT SOUND)"Okay..."BUT HE SAYS YOUNG LEADERS ARE EAGER TO TACKLE THE OBESITY PROBLEM ONE CARROT, ONE KID, ONE RADISH AT AT TIME.(NAT SOUND)"Oh yeah, a rabbich, rabbich..."NOEL WAGHORN, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS. (****END****) ANCHOR VOICE: Noel Waghorn-------------------------VIDEO PRODUCER: Cindy Sharp---------------------------VIDEO SOURCE: All AP-----------------------VIDEO APPROVAL: Donna Starddard----------------------------VIDEO RESTRICTIONS: None----------------------------------MARKET EMBARGO (S): None--------------------------------SCRIPT/WIRE SOURCE: None, OLV enterprise