We are happy to announce that for the second year in a row, Teens for Food Justice will be tracking and evaluating the social and educational impact of its program through a Capstone grant from the NYU Wagner School of Public Service.
NYU Wagner’s Capstone program brings together teams of graduate students to address complex challenges and identify new opportunities for nonprofit, governmental, health-related, urban planning and international agencies. Teens for Food Justice’s partnership with NYU Capstone last year yielded a program evaluation that confirmed many positive outcomes we strive for in our mission, and informed the direction of our program moving forward.
Highlights from the 2014/15 Program Evaluation
Changes in Youth and Family Nutrition Awareness
93% of TFFJ program participants reported being much more aware of nutrition and where their food comes from.
“I’ve been a lot more conscious of my food miles, of buying produce in and out of season, and small changes in my diet that improve my nutrition in general.”
“I’ve been able to coach my stepmother to buy healthier food options to nurture my family. This has been particularly useful to her, since she is now more conscious of nutrition for my baby brother.”
“I have become a lover of green smoothies and make them every week for myself and my family. I also try to incorporate all food groups into my meals.”
“I have definitely added a lot more fruits and vegetables into my diet and cut out a lot of junk food and oily foods. My body has really adjusted to eating more produce and is very satisfied without all the other stuff now.”
Strengthened Leadership Skills
94% of youth volunteers felt their leadership skills had been moderately to significantly strengthened as a result of the program.
“I believe I know how to take charge and communicate better thanks to this program.”
“I feel more confident, I learned how to work with a big group and make decisions as a team.”
“I am more comfortable speaking and supporting other people in advocating for issues involving food injustice.”
Becoming Catalysts for Social Change
88% reported increased confidence empowering others to advocate for improved health and food quality in their community.
“I’m much more conscious of the issues and have been able to raise my voice on multiple occasions.”
“I have sought more ways to interact with my community (at school and in my neighborhood) and tried starting conversations about food justice problems as well as ways to improve dietary choices in your daily life.”
“We completed a training where we learned how to shop efficiently and economically for the whole family. From that I learned how to make my diet better and to let others around me know about these skills as well.”
This year’s team of graduate students will build upon last year’s results by evaluating how nutrition awareness, healthy eating habits and grassroots food justice advocacy are boosted through youth and community engagement in the TFFJ after-school program.