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Healthy meal boxes delivered to families with young children across Devon

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Thousands of meal boxes have again been delivered to families with young children this half term holiday week, in an initiative to help those who are struggling during the coronavirus pandemic.

We first ran ‘The Goodie Box’ initiative during the Easter holidays, with incredible success. The boxes included ingredients and simple recipe ideas, and they were delivered to families’ front doors. Families loved them.

We’ve done it again this holiday, and the boxes have included fresh and store cupboard ingredients for dhal curry and flatbreads; hearty veg-packed pie; veggie bolognese; creamy summer pasta; tomato and courgette risotto; Mexican bean burrito; pitta pizzas; and fruity pancakes.

Each recipe has tips on how to swap or add ingredients and advice on healthy eating and how to prevent food waste.

Like last time, there’s been no specific eligibility to receive the meal boxes, but professionals who work with young families have helped us identify those who may be having a difficult time right now and who would enjoy and benefit from The Goodie Box.

And like last time, families have been overjoyed this week to receive their boxes.

“Lots of families with very young children have found the coronavirus pandemic extremely challenging,” said Ruby Entwistle of Public Health Devon. “Many families’ incomes have changed and they have been faced with new sources of stress, which can affect both mental and physical health. These pressures can make it difficult for families to eat healthily.

“These boxes are about eating well, but they’re also about having fun as a family and learning important skills, from planning and preparing healthy meals, to minimising food waste.”

Photo of Councillor Roger Croad
Councillor Roger Croad

Councillor Roger Croad, Devon County Council’s Cabinet Member with responsibility for public health, said:

“Making sure that young people in Devon have access to nutritional and healthy meals is a priority for us. We have a number of initiatives that aim to address food poverty, and that make sure that children and young people in the county do not go hungry. The Goodie Box initiative is a particular delight to see, for its additional benefits in helping bring families together to prepare and make meals, and to learn about minimising food waste.”