Monday, October 6, 2014

We did it! We reached our “Fruit for Kids” goal!

GPM successfully raised $9,000 for Fruit for Kids, a project to add fresh fruit to the regular menu of daily hot, nutritious meals that GPM children receive when they attend class. The funds, which were part of an on-line matching grant campaign to improve the health and nutrition of 1000 children learning in school in the Mumbai slums, were matched by $9,000 from The Good People Fund. Modern Trousseau, a corporate sponsor of GPM activities, Jenny Samad and other GPM volunteer alumni as well as a generous gift from a UK couple who visited GPM also made a significant contribution. The rest of the donations came from donors around the world via the online campaign.

“As we all enjoy the beautiful juicy apples that are harvested at this time of year, it is a great feeling to know that 1000 schoolkids in Mumbai who have so little will also enjoy the sweet taste of fruit,” Naomi Eisenberger, Executive Director of The Good People Fund, wrote on Facebook.” It was the Good People Fund's honor to put this challenge out there to GPM.”

“The Fruit for Kids program adds a vital new component to the nutrition that the children are receiving from GPM,” says GPM Founding Director Jacob Sztokman. “Fruit is such an important part of every child’s development. We are so very grateful to The Good People Fund, as well as all the donors all around the world who made this happen. ”

Here are three reasons why children need fruit:

* Fresh fiber. Fruit is an important source of fiber, which improves digestion while decreasing the risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

* Vitamins and minerals. Fruit is vital for potassium, which helps keep children's blood pressure balanced; for vitamin C, which boosts immune systems and helps prevent infection; and vitamin A for healthy eyes and folate for normal DNA production.

The vitamins and minerals in fruit  also keep children's kidneys working normally, which decreases his risk of kidney stones, and helps build bone mass. Fruit also reduces the risk of certain types of cancer such as throat, esophageal and stomach. 

* Cognitive development. Fruit improves brain development, and research shows that a diet rich in fruit actually results in higher test scores. A healthy diet that includes fruit can also increase children's focus in the classroom.

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