Kids in the Kitchen to be held at YMCA

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

By Lisa Craft

Jacquie Howell from the Barry County Extension Center announced that Kids in the Kitchen would be held twice this summer at the Monett Area YMCA. Howell revealed plans at the Barry County Connections Coalition May meeting.

Howell stated that a new garden spot is being created at the Y for the "Eating from the Garden." Approximately 30 children from the Y's summer program will have a two-by-two garden plot. The class will be held each Friday for five weeks.

Howell also announced that the University of Missouri Extension Service would do taste testing at area grocery stores soon. They will demonstrate how to prepare fresh vegetables and fruits and how good they taste.

Discussion was held on the "It's Simple" program, designed to help parents and caregivers learn the forgotten art of cooking. The program will encourage lean meats, grains, and fresh fruits and vegetables and simple ways to prepare them. Coalition nutritionists will design recipe cards that will be offered to grocery stores and daycares for display with the in season foods and shared with parents of children in area daycares.

The drug take back event was a success with 101 pounds collected from Monett and 90 pounds collected in Cassville. A new permanent box is being made by the Scott Regional Technology Center students to be placed at the Monett Police Department. Board members voted to promote drug take back efforts every spring during National Take Back Day, rather than twice a year.

Four "Not for Human Consumption" lunch-n-learns were held across the area. The forums increase awareness of the drug trends in southwest Missouri. Over 100 people attended the forums.

A discussion was held on the lack of affordable sports physicals. Leesa Ginther, registered nurse at the Barry County Health Department, reported that last summer and fall the health department received many calls for referrals for sports physicals. Ginther asked that Mercy, Cox and Access research the issues with Missouri State High School Activities Association (MISHA) physicals and possibly developing some affordable clinics in the future.

Kelly Paul, of Access Family Care, reported visiting 10 schools in southwest Missouri offering full dental care to children of high school ages. Nicole Rodosta, clinic educator, explained how she conducts a pre-appointment review of patients. Those with chronic health issues meet with her on a one-on-one basis for assistance in maintaining overall good health with frequent follow-ups.

Carole Hamm, head nurse at Monett schools, announced that lifetime sports will now be offered in summer school for grades five through 12. Hamm said that new standing orders were being developed to offer topical creams and ointments to children. Tylenol will be given under certain circumstances. A form will be added to the beginning of the school year packet for parents to sign.

Lauren Holland, wellness instructor at CoxHealth, reported that the "Committed to Kids" program would begin on June 10. This is an eight-week program geared toward adolescents and teens ages 11-14 with a body mass index greater that the 85th percentile.

Dave Steinman, of Mercy Hospital, discussed the upcoming health fair. Tracelyn Sutton, from the American Cancer Society, reported that another large study would be conducted focusing on lifestyle. The study is for ages 30 through 65 and will be a 20 to 30 year study. Anyone interested in participating can call 417-447-1489 for more information.

The next coalition meeting will be held at 9:30 a.m. on July 17 at the Barry County Health Department in Monett.

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