Our Food Relief Program feeds children who otherwise would go hungry; however, we acknowledge that we are not able to provide the most nutritious of meals at this time due to our limited funding and dependence on donated foods, which include a lot of animal products. Our children need healthier, more wholesome and nutritious plant-based food. The prevalence of diabetes in Belizean adults is 17.1% compared to 8.7% in the rest of Latin America and the Caribbean, and without some change, the children we serve will also develop diabetes and other chronic diseases as a consequence of their diet.
To kickstart Cornerstone Foundation’s transition to serving plant-based food, we are proposing a Plant-Based Tuesdays Initiate. This initiative will involve changing the current menu for the Food Relief Program to incorporate a healthy, exclusively vegan meal on Tuesday.
To ensure that the vegan food that is prepared is well-balanced, nutritious, and appealing in taste to the children, our cook will receive training from a cook at a local vegan resort, Mariposas, a partner of Cornerstone. Furthermore, a local pediatrician—who was particularly concerned about the high rates of childhood diabetes he has witnessed in our community—has volunteered to assist us in preparing a nutrition-conscious menu tailored to the developmental needs of the children we serve.
With this funding, Cornerstone will be able to take a major first step in its gradual transformation to a charitable distributor of plant-based food. This step represents an alignment between the ideals of our staff and our practice. Moreover, this step will enhance the nutrition of the meals that we are able to provide to the children and introduce them to a healthier, plant-based lifestyle.
Funded by Vegan (August 2019)