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Alliance For Health Equity Community-Led Solutions Amidst Food Deserts

Mar 7, 2024 | Uncategorized

Shared by the Alliance for Health Equity, during National Nutrition Month, this annual campaign underscores the significance of informed dietary choices and healthy lifestyle habits. The theme “Beyond the Table” delves into various facets of nutrition, including food production, distribution, and safety practices. However, the challenges persist for those residing in food deserts, characterized by inadequate access to affordable, nutritious food.

Verywell Health defines food deserts as regions lacking such access, affecting over 13.5 million individuals across the United States. In eastern Pennsylvania, Chester County harbors both affluent and impoverished neighborhoods, with Coatesville and West Chester Borough designated as federal food deserts. Despite the prevalence of public assistance for food purchases, many residents encounter hurdles due to transportation limitations and escalating food costs. Nonetheless, maintaining a nutritious diet on a tight budget remains achievable.

In circumstances where farm-to-fork solutions are impractical, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics advocates for canned foods as viable alternatives. Canning effectively preserves nutrients, rendering canned fruits, vegetables, soups, meats, and fish comparable in nutritional value to fresh or frozen counterparts. Emphasizing low-sodium options is crucial when selecting canned goods to ensure optimal health benefits.

Community-driven initiatives emerge as pivotal solutions in combating food insecurity and related health disparities. The Chester County Food Bank exemplifies this approach, annually distributing over 3.5 million pounds of food, including over 1,200 fruit and vegetable “prescriptions.” Likewise, the Alliance for Health Equity champions grassroots efforts, empowering local residents to shape essential systems and services. Through collaborative partnerships spanning various sectors, the Alliance endeavors to bolster the resilience and well-being of the Greater Coatesville community.

For further details regarding their mission or to contribute to their cause, interested parties are encouraged to visit alliancehealthequity.org or participate in their initiatives. Article written by The Alliance for Health Equity and posted on their blog page. Feature Photo from Alliance of Health equity

“The Alliance for Health Equity (formerly Brandywine Health Foundation) is a philanthropic organization striving to advance a more equitable, resilient and healthy community for all residents of the Greater Coatesville area. We pursue our mission by providing grants and scholarships to local nonprofits and students that address health and economic disparities and social justice. We also build partnership programs and give voice to those often left out of community solution building to improve the overall health of their communities. 100% of contributions go directly to those in need.

Posted by Monica Ferguson

Monica is a senior at West Chester University studying Digital Marketing. She is excited about moving to Chester County and eventually starting her career there after graduation.

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