Our Shopping and Eating Healthy on a Budget Workshop at the Queens Public Library

SHAREing & CAREing Program Manager Merryl Reichbach developed and presented Shopping and Eating Healthy on a Budget on December 4, 2017 11-1pm at the Adult Learning Center at the Rochdale Village Branch of the Queens Public Library. The students were preparing to take the high school equivalency exam and all had advanced English language skills. They represented, primarily, native New Yorkers from underserved communities.

The workshop opened with a description of SHAREing & CAREing programs and services, including free counseling for people impacted by cancer and linkages to low-cost and free health care screenings, regardless of insurance or immigration status. Two participants had survived breast cancer and others had close family members who were survivors. Merryl answered participant questions and provided information about screening and early detection as well as information on diagnosis, treatment and prevention of cancer.

The rest of the workshop focused on menu and budget planning, shopping skills, nutrition information and food preparation strategies that contribute to healthy eating on a budget. Participants were actively engaged in the workshop. They shared strategies they have found helpful on this topic and asked many questions about food, nutrition and health. Participants were very enthusiastic about this workshop and requested additional ones for the future, including those more specifically focused on cancer, caretaking issues and stress management.

A variety of supplemental handouts were distributed to students, including our bilingual program brochure, handouts focused on weekly menu planning, creating grocery lists, recipe generators, and a list of comprehensive resources available in NYC for applying for food assistance and accessing local food banks.

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