Open Door Champions Healthy Eating In Ossining

OSSINING, N.Y. -- More than 1,000 kids in Ossining have learned how to eat healthy thanks to Open Door Family Medical Center.

Kids participating in Open Door's Champions For Healthy Kids program
Kids participating in Open Door's Champions For Healthy Kids program Photo Credit: Open Door

Open Door is teaching kids the Champions for Healthy Kids program after receiving a grant from the Academy for Nutrition and Dietetics. The nutrition component is based on My Plate (, and the physical component is based on Recess Rocks (

The program is at Peas and Karrots, First Step, the Ossining Children's Center and Park Early Childhood

The Academy for Nutrition and Dietetics funds the grant for low income communities and places that lack nutrition education.

"Part of Open Door's mission is to serve the underserved community," Gina DeVito of Open Door said.

As part of the lessons, kids learn about different fruits and vegetables and do taste tests with different combinations.

"If they like it, they make a smiley face, if not, they make a sad face," DeVito said. "They can bring it home to mom and dad and show them what they like. Our goal is to expose them to things they haven't tried yet. Our goal is to make trying new food an exciting thing for them."

Kids have also learned about milk, whole grains, brown rice and quinoa. 

"There is definitely some truth to the fact that children who are exposed to different foods at a young age are more likely to try them," DeVito said. "There's a lot to be said about that."

DeVito said the kids are all smiles and enjoy talking about the foods they've gotten to try.

"It's been really great," DeVito said. "Everyone is engaged and involved. They love the apples. It's been a great success and we are looking to continue the program."

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