Food and Fitness for Families

October Newsletter

Welcome Back!

Welcome back to another year! Whether you are learning from your classroom or learning from home, we are excited to have you back and learning! Gratiot-Isabella RESD School Nutrition Staff have so many awesome things prepared for this year and can’t wait to share it with you over the next couple months.

Gratiot-Isabella RESD has been awarded a grant through the Michigan Fitness Foundation and the USDA to provide nutrition education to students, families and the community. This project has been titled Food and Fitness for Families. So anytime you see or hear this, you know they are talking about this program. Over the course of the school year, your student will be receiving nutrition education lessons facilitated by a trained nutrition educator that will focus on establishing healthy eating habits and increasing physical activity.

If your child has been part of the program in the past, it may look a little different this year. Due to Covid-19, we have made the decision to work remotely with schools for the time being. This could change as the school year progresses. The assigned nutrition educator will video chat with your child’s classroom for 30-40 minutes a month for a virtual nutrition education lesson. We will be working with your child’s school and teacher to make sure that we are abiding by all school protocols and that any student that wants to participate, is able to. Each month, we will be sending home a monthly newsletter that will include program updates and fun recipes and activities for you to try at home.

Our staff is very excited to have the opportunity to work with your child, school, and community!

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Eating Well in a SNAP

The Michigan Fitness Foundation has developed Eating Well in a SNAP , a website designed to help families creating healthy, seasonal meals! Eating Well in a SNAP also has numerous resources you can use at home. You can access the website here

Farmers Market Food Navigator Program

Farmers markets can increase access to fresh, healthy foods within a community, while supporting local farmers. When farmers market vendors accept food assistance benefits, fresh produce is more affordable and allows low income families to stretch their food dollars while eating a healthy diet.

Farm markets throughout the state have teamed up with Michigan Fitness Foundation to assist with barriers with the help of a food navigator. Lily Byrne is a food navigator that serves the Mt. Pleasant and St. Louis markets. She provides resources and nutrition education at the market, helps shoppers use their dollars more effectively, conducts community outreach, and works with market managers and vendors to increase access.

For more information about the food navigator program visit Lily at the market this year!

Meet the Food and Fitness for Families Staff!

Our staff has been preparing our program to meet the needs of our community. These are the individuals that will be working with our schools and communities.

Recipe Corner

Each month, we will highlight a recipe and include a food demonstration showing you just how easy they are to make!

Watermelon Salsa


watermelon - 3 cups, seeded and chopped

medium onion - 1/2, chopped

red bell pepper - 1/2, chopped

jalapeño pepper - 1 tablespoon, seeded and chopped

fresh cilantro - 2 tablespoons, chopped

lime juice - 2 tablespoons

vegetable oil - 1 teaspoon


1. In a medium bowl, mix all ingredients.

2. Serve immediately or cover and refrigerate for up to 1 hour to allow flavors to blend.

Prep Tip: Choose melons that feel heavy for size and sound hollow when tapped on rind.

Change it Up: Scoop fruit into melon balls. Freeze melon balls and enjoy as cold snacks on hot days.

Nutrition Tip: Serve sliced melon with lowfat yogurt or cottage cheese.

Watermelon Salsa - Recipe
This project was funded in whole or in part by the USDA’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Education through the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services and the Michigan Fitness Foundation.

This institution is an equal opportunity provider.