On Saturday, October 27thfrom 2:00 – 3:00 PM, Friends of the Libraries, Kona is sponsoring a program featuring the Kealakehe School Chorus and Ukulele Ensemble led by Gloria Juan-Tapaatoutai. This talented group has done numerous performances here and abroad most recently having toured Los Angeles where they performed at Disneyland and Crystal Cathedral. This program is free to the public.
Learn simple ways to encourage healthy eating habits
and curb growing obesity rates
KAMUELA, Hawai‘i—August 10, 2012—In hopes of reversing the trend of skyrocketing childhood and adult obesity rates, several Hawai‘i Island organizations are working together to provide free educational workshops and events for families and school garden teachers.
“We are living in an era where today’s children are likely to have shorter life spans than their parents,” said Vivienne Aronowitz, a registered dietician, certified diabetes educator and the nutritionist for all Kaiser Permanente Clinics on Hawai‘i Island. “One out of three children is or will be at risk for diabetes, and obesity will only increase their risks for heart disease, hypertension, and stroke as well. Parents can and should play the greatest role in establishing healthier eating habits in the home. Incorporating healthier foods and physical activity into daily lives is certainly a lot easier when everyone in the family works together. And teachers can have a profound influence on their students’ knowledge and behaviors. Eat-Think-Grow is designed to help island families, residents, and teachers succeed by promoting and supporting healthier eating habits and activities.”
Through January 2013, Eat-Think-Grow will host a variety of free workshops designed to give participants a greater understanding of nutrition, gardening, healthy and affordable local ingredient options, as well as recipes and hands-on cooking demonstrations.
Family Nutrition Nights
“Getting Back to Your Roots: Raising Healthy Keiki in Today’s World” are evening events for parents and students facilitated by Aronowitz. Attendees will participate in a school garden tour, followed by a presentation by Aronowitz and a demonstration on how to make healthy snacks kids will enjoy. Families will also agree on an action plan they will embark on together. These events will be presented on:
Tuesday, August 28: Kahakai Elementary School, Kailua-Kona, 5–7 p.m.
Wednesday, August 29: Hilo Union Elementary School, Hilo, 5–7 p.m.
Families may reserve space for either evening by emailing Donna Mitts at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling The Kohala Center at 887-6411.
Hawai‘i Island educators who teach or participate in school garden programs are invited to attend a two-part workshop series, “The Foundations of Garden-Based Nutrition: a Workshop for Teachers.” Facilitated by Aronowitz and other island nutritionists, the series will extend participants’ basic nutrition knowledge, while emphasizing the relationship between children’s nutritional needs and garden-based learning. These sessions will also give participants materials to use with students, ideas for incorporating healthy eating into their school garden programs, and hands-on opportunities to prepare meals and snacks with whole foods and locally grown garden fruits and vegetables. The workshops will be presented on:
Session 1: September 15, Kahakai Elementary School, Kailua-Kona, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Session 1: November 10, Hawai‘i Academy of Arts and Science, Pahoa, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Session 2: January 12, 2013; Kua O Ka La Public Charter School, Pahoa, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Session 2: January 26, 2013; Innovations Public Charter School, Kailua-Kona, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Eligible teachers may reserve space in the workshops by emailing Donna Mitts at email@example.com or by calling The Kohala Center at 887-6411.
School Food Festivals
Three schools on Hawai‘i Island will host School Food Festivals during the traditional makahiki season, the time of year between harvesting and preparing the following year’s crops. The food festivals will share work being done by teachers and school garden educators to increase students’ nutritional awareness and healthy food choices, increase physical activity, and help to create lifelong habits that support well being. Each school listed below has a special interest in their community’s health, and these events will celebrate food that is nutritious, tasty, and fun to grow, prepare, and eat. Food festivals will be held on:
November 17: Kahakai Elementary School, Kailua-Kona
November 17: Mala‘ai at Waimea Middle School, Waimea
December 14: Kua O Ka La Public Charter School, Pahoa
“Hawai‘i Island is such an ideal place to live for anyone who wants to eat and live healthier,” said Aronowitz. “We are able to grow and harvest a wide variety of nutritious foods here, we have some of the finest farmers markets in the country, and our climate is ideal for outdoor activities year-round. Eat-Think-Grow helps island residents appreciate and take advantage of these gifts, while providing education, inspiration, and support. Together, we can slow and reverse obesity rates so our keiki can look forward to a healthier, happier future.”
About The Kohala Center
The Kohala Center (http://www.kohalacenter.org) is an independent, community-based center for research, education, and conservation. The center was established in direct response to the request of island residents to create greater educational and employment opportunities by enhancing—and celebrating—Hawai‘i’s spectacular natural and cultural landscapes.
The goal of HISGN (http://www.kohalacenter.org/HISGN/about.html) is to help island schools build gardening and agricultural programs that will significantly contribute to the increased consumption of locally produced food by involving students, their school communities, and their family networks in food production. School-based gardens serve as living classrooms in which children can learn core academic subjects, while also getting hands-on lessons in nutrition and food cultivation, harvesting, and preparation. School-based garden programs have been shown to increase participants’ fruit and vegetable consumption.
Did you know that when a bee finds a source of nectar she goes back to the hive and does a dance known as the waggle? The farther away the flower, the longer and more intricate the dance becomes. Unfortunately, the mutant Guava Bee does not dance, she blogs. She's here to tell you, there's sweetness somewhere on the Big Island of Hawaii.
(Photo by Heidi Vickery-Uechi)