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PARTNERSHIP FOR A HEALTHIER AMERICA AND MICHELLE OBAMA ANNOUNCE PHILADELPHIA AS PART OF ‘PASS THE LOVE’ CAMPAIGN TO DELIVER 240,000 HEALTHY MEALS TO FAMILIES FACING FOOD INSECURITY
5,000 Philadelphia families to receive healthy meals kits as campaign distributes 1 million meals inspired by Netflix’s ‘Waffles + Mochi’ and raises awareness of food equity around the country
PHILADELPHIA, PA – (July 13, 2021) – The Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA), in collaboration with PHA Honorary Chair Michelle Obama and Higher Ground Productions, is bringing the ‘Pass the Love w/ Waffles + Mochi’ campaign to Philadelphia. Starting next month, 5,000 Philadelphia families will receive ‘Pass the Love’ meal kits, with recipes and ingredients inspired by the new Netflix series, Waffles + Mochi. Over the course of four weeks, PHA and local partner Philabundance will distribute 240,000 healthy meals to food-insecure Philadelphia families as the campaign works to meet its goal of distributing 1 million meals across the country.
COVID-19 has greatly worsened food insecurity in Philadelphia – last July, Philabundance had already seen demand increase by 50% to 60% in traditionally food-insecure areas and was on track to give out an average of 2.25 million pounds of food a month compared to 1.25 million pounds a month prior to the pandemic.
“I’m excited to announce that Philadelphia will be our next partner city for our Pass the Love campaign with @PHAnews!,” said Former First Lady and PHA Honorary Chair Michelle Obama via Twitter, announcing Philadelphia as the next ‘Pass the Love’ partner city. “We’ll be distributing healthy meal kits to families soon, and with your support, we can reach even more families in need. Donate at WafflesAndMochi.org.”
PHA also announced today a partnership with the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) to evaluate the impact of the ‘Pass the Love’ campaign in uplifting food-insecure families, teaching new cooking skills, and fostering healthier habits. Through focus groups, surveys, and interviews, CHOP will look at how the program impacts the ease and enjoyment of cooking at home for participating families in select partner cities. CHOP’s research will culminate in a report and set of recommendations expected Spring 2022.
‘Pass the Love’ distributions began earlier this summer in Atlanta, Cleveland, and Detroit, with additional cities to be announced. ‘Pass the Love’ meal kit distributions take place over four weeks and are structured to build the capacity of local nonprofits in those cities. Socially conscious food service organization Genuine Foods has sourced and assembled the meal kits, including high-quality ingredients and recipes inspired by Waffles + Mochi, enabling families to create meals that are fun, fast, and affordable to replicate.
Sample Pass the Love Meal Kit Recipes are Available HERE
Images of Pass the Love Meal Kits are Available HERE
“PHA is honored to be able to serve families with good food in a format that makes it easier to cook at home,” said Nancy E. Roman, President and CEO, Partnership for a Healthier America. “PHA is working hard to create access and exposure to affordable meal making for families, laying the groundwork for the good health we all deserve.“
“The Pass the Love campaign could not come at a better time. It is especially urgent now, because of the impact the pandemic has had on both the availability and quality of food for so many in the Philadelphia region—especially children,” said Loree D. Jones, CEO, Philabundance. “Thanks to Partnership for A Healthier America and their new campaign with former First Lady Michelle Obama, Philabundance can help spread the joy of food and cooking to families around the Philadelphia region.”
“Nearly one in five Philadelphians do not have enough healthy food to eat to live a healthy lifestyle, and nearly one-third of the families that come to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s (CHOP) Emergency Department report that they are food insecure,” said Madeline Bell, President and Chief Executive Officer at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. “While we offer a number of programs that address hunger and food insecurity among Philadelphia’s children, this effort presents us with a unique opportunity to join this partnership and help families in our community tackle food insecurity. We are also pleased to be chosen to evaluate the program’s impact, which draws on the research focus of our mission.”
‘Pass the Love w/ Waffles + Mochi’ leverages the show, its characters, and Mrs. Obama to meaningfully shift our food culture toward more affordable, fun, at-home meals for families of every income level. Through the meal kit distribution program, PHA is targeting communities with the highest levels of childhood poverty, as identified by the Annie E. Casey Foundation.