March 23, 2013
by Feeding America

During National Nutrition Month, we will be highlighting programs across our network that are finding unique ways to get nutritious foods to people struggling with hunger. This story comes from Mississippi Food Network in Jackson, MS.

The Mississippi Food Network isn't a large organization, but it definitely has a large mission. The food bank serves approximately 100,000 people a month and feels a responsibility to not just provide food, but nutrition education as well.

To aid in this monumental task, the food bank partnered with the University of Mississippi's Dietetic Intern program. University of Mississippi dietetic interns have four-year degrees, but are serving a year internship to earn their Registered Dietician license. The interns — approximately 14 to 16 people per year— spend a one-week rotation at the Mississippi Food Network to help educate its clients on nutrition and wellness.

The dietetic interns give the food bank the extra help necessary to provide clients with critical nutrition resources. They visit local food pantries and teach cooking classes, share recipes or discuss nutrition topics. While the interns are teaching many about nutrition, they are also learning as well. The week rotation teaches many of them about the reality of hunger and poverty in their community, and the encouragement that they can make a difference.

Tags: Nutrition , Mississippi , Mississippi Food Network

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