At Kindercare, we believe children should have a healthy relationship with food as soon as they start eating solids. We want children to understand that healthy food is real food that is simple, delicious, and nourishing to their bodies. Mealtimes can be a joyful and educational experience where children are exposed to a variety of different foods, increasing their nutrient intake and reducing fussy eating.
That is why in January 2017, fourteen Kindercare centres teamed up with Nourished Beginnings to work on a pilot project, evaluating and enhancing our menu. We recognise how important food and nutrition is for a child’s growth and development. Now, we have 26 centres participating in this program and we have heard first hand from our parent community how much their child loves trying our food with some even noticing behavioural changes in them!
Our menu, in partnership with Nourished Beginnings, is based on the principle of whole-foods that meet the specific requirements of paediatric nutrition and supports children to develop a positive relationship with food. This also helps reduce the likelihood of them developing diabetes and other non-communicable diseases later in life.
'Kids in the Kitchen' 'Educator Express' and 'Health Connect' are just some of the creative resources our centre cooks and teachers are provided with for their ongoing professional development. Things like portion sizes, feeding babies, managing food allergies, whole food cooking in the classroom are part of what our team stays up to date with through training. So when families entrust their children to us, they know their children receive a varied, tasty and nutritionally balanced vegetarian menu.
Parents also receive monthly nutritional resources like recipes, nutritional tips, eBooks, and information to support the replication of positive mealtime experiences at home too. We share this content on our online communication and documentation tool called Educa.
Nourished Beginnings’ mission is to provide quality food education for families and early childhood centres that will enable children to grow into healthy adults, with strong food values, and with a healthy relationship to food, for life. They regularly make resources available for purchase in the form of cookbooks, and eBooks with great recipes and tips on how to successfully help your child venture into the world of solids successfully, create stress-free lunches for your school-aged children and have a happier, healthier and nourished family.
Check out their resources here: Nourished Beginnings