Do You Know About the TEAL PUMPKIN PROJECT???….You Should!

Teal-Pumpkin-ProjectThere is much…I MEAN MUCH…that the diabetes community can learn from the Teal Pumpkin Project.  I thank Christina for informing me of this endeavor.  What is the Teal Pumpkin Project and who is responsible?

The Teal Pumpkin Project is an endeavor by FARE.  Their informative website states:
Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) works on behalf of the 15 million Americans with food allergies, including all those at risk for life-threatening anaphylaxis. This potentially deadly disease affects 1 in 13 children in the United States – or roughly two in every classroom. FARE is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that was formed in 2012 as the result of a merger between the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network and the Food Allergy Initiative.

Their mission is to find a cure for food allergies, and to keep individuals with food allergies safe and included.

I, for one, love that word “included”….it says so much doesn’t it?  I also love the fact that someone, or a group of people, stepped outside the box and stated we should join forces and become one.  Better to be a group to be reckoned with by becoming one powerhouse than two groups jockeying for positioning in the same space.  Not that it could happen in our worlds, but it surely gave me food for thought.

Now about the Teal Pumpkin Project.  Again from their website: This Halloween, FARE is encouraging communities to start a new tradition that will help make this holiday season less scary for children with food allergies: the Teal Pumpkin Project. This campaign encourages people to raise awareness of food allergies by providing non-food treats for trick-or-treaters and painting a pumpkin teal – the color of food allergy awareness – to place in front of their house along with a free printable sign from FARE to indicate they have non-food treats available. 

The Teal Pumpkin Project is designed to promote safety, inclusion and respect of individuals managing food allergies – and to keep Halloween a fun, positive experience for all.

Now kids with Type 1 are NOT REALLY restricted from foods, but they surely have to watch carefully what they eat and balance their management with what they eat.  But we all have kids in our neighborhoods and it very well may be that some have food allergies and in fact, I can almost guarantee that some kids coming to your house; will!

It certainly would not be a bad thing to take part in this program so take a look at their site and download whatever you need to become a Teal Pumpkin Project House in your neighborhood.  There is no reason why we cannot help this organization because it makes sense and helps others…..why not?

Which takes me to another large point about this project—when you go to their Teal Pumpkin Project website you are informed: FARE would like to thank the Food Allergy Community of East Tennessee (FACET) for this wonderful idea. We are pleased to bring it to the attention of families across the country, and we hope you will join in our effort to make Halloween more inclusive for children with food allergies.

I find it so incredibly encouraging that a national organization publicly  thanks a group for an idea and actually partners with them to expand it because it makes sense.  It’s not merely an awareness campaign, it is an action step so kids with allergies know which houses have toys/items/small gifts in lieu of candy.  Again, it makes sense.
So FARE, my hat is off to you for your campaign and giving credit where credit is due and not merely taking an idea, changing it slightly, and making it your own.

We all deal with kids during Halloween, so this is something we surely can help spread the word; so feel free to share this post wherever you can.  At the end of the days, all of us are a community are we not?   In any community it surely strengthens it when ALL BOATS rise together.

Nothing scary about that…………………… there?

I am a diabetes dad.

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