COVID-19 Challenge: Keeping School Nutrition Programs Robust, Safe, and Funded

Presented by: 

Melanie Wilk, RDN, LDN

Date & time: 
Tuesday, November 10, 2020 - 5:30pm to 7:30pm

Zoom Virtual (Live)

About the Speaker

Melanie Wilk, RDN, LDN is the Director of Food Service for Chicopee Public Schools in Chicopee, MA. She is a registered dietitian and attended UMass Amherst for both her undergrad and dietetic internship. During her internship, she was placed at Chicopee Public Schools for her food service rotation and fell in love with their program, named Chicopee FRESH. They have a robust farm to school program throughout 15 schools and pride themselves on their community outreach and efforts to combat food insecurity; it is so much more than food service for Chicopee FRESH. Now, she heads the program, and most recently has spearheaded the effort to continue feeding school meals through the COVID-19 school closures. To date, Chicopee FRESH has served over 600,000 free school meals via drive up, grab and go meal service at most of the schools in Chicopee along with several other sites around the city. Chicopee FRESH has been recognized both locally and statewide by No Kid Hungry, Project Bread, and the EOS Foundation, and Melanie was a featured speaker during a School Lunch Hero Day virtual celebration given by the MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. Presently, Chicopee FRESH continues to serve meals to both students in school as well as grab and go service for remote learners.

Program Objectives

After attending this session, participants will be able to:
  1. Describe process by which a local school food service program adjusted its meal delivery program upon the outbreak of the COVID 19 pandemic.
  2. Review the USDA regulations that were navigated to ensure this smooth transition.
  3. Summarize key legislation that provided the necessary flexibilities for school food service directors during this time of crisis.
  4. Identify opportunities for Registered Dietitian Nutritionists to advocate for continued adequate funding and resources for school food service programs.

2 RD CPEUs offered; the event will be recorded for those who cannot attend live.

RSVP Information: RSVP to [email protected]

Cost of Event: WAMDA Members $10, Non-Members $15, Students/Interns Free (Students/Interns -- RSVP via email only)

Cash or Check payable to:
WAMDA c/o Program Planning Committee
PO Box 934
West Springfield, MA 01090

OR, pay via PayPal:

Virtual Program Registration
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