The Groceryships strategy is to temporarily provide families with money to buy whole, plant-foods (vegetables, fruits, beans, nuts & seeds), and enroll them in a comprehensive program of nutrition, cooking, and shopping education to help them increase consumption of those whole, plant-foods.
Our six month program consists of weekly 2 hour meetings. In the first hour families learn the cooking, nutrition, and shopping skills necessary to increase the amounts of whole, plant-foods they eat. They learn how to prepare vegetables, make fruit/vegetable shakes, add fruit/vegetables into other foods, and otherwise prepare food in a healthy manner. They also learn skills on how to navigate an unhealthy food environment.
The second hour of each weekly meeting is structured as a support group, where we discuss the challenges and struggles of adopting a healthier diet in such an unhealthy environment. We discuss things like addictive foods (and the associated withdrawal symptoms), emotional eating, and family-specific belief systems around food. But the power of this sharing circle is less in the subjects we discuss, than in the manner in which we discuss them. We endeavor to create a safe, sacred space, where every person is respected and honored. No advice or cross-talk is allowed. Rather, this is a time where people can share what is really going on in their lives to a group of supportive listeners.
During the six month program, Groceryships families will also receive:
- Medical Support - Clinic partners provide assessments, check-ups, and goal-setting.
- Resources - Recipients receive a package of tools/resources including films, food-journals, appliances and literature.
Our program is different from standard nutrition education and diets which promote things like calorie-counting, ratios of carbs vs fat, and eating unhealthy food in moderation. We focus on increasing the amount of whole, plant-foods in families diets, but we also focus on the emotional sides of eating. We believe that knowledge is only part of the battle, and that many of us are on a journey towards health that will last a lifetime.