YMCA fights food insecurity with North Baton Rouge event

Local News

BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — The YMCA in north Baton Rouge is leading a program to combat food insecurity by offering healthy food, wellness activities, and cooking demonstrations.

The YMCA is focusing most of its efforts on the North Baton Rouge area because it is considered a food desert. In other words, while there may be affordable food options available in the neighborhood, many of those choices are unhealthy.

According to a report by the USDA, food insecurity can lead to several chronic diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, heart attacks, and even cancer in some cases. 

To help fight the lack of access to healthy food, the YMCA is hosting a pop-up farmers market to provide fresh fruits and vegetables to the community, along with cooking demonstrations to show families how they can prepare healthy meals at home. 

This is not the first event of its kind at the local YMCA. CEO Chris Engle says this is something they saw a need for during the pandemic, “the Y really kind of stepped in and got involved with helping families and youth around food insecurity, and that was handing out boxes of food, it was partnering with the food bank, it was partnering with the three o’clock project and other entities to really just try to get resources out to our communities.”

The mobile Farmer’s Market is available to community members every week, and cooking demonstrations are held monthly at the North Baton Rouge YMCA.

The event starts at 10:30 Wednesday morning at the ExxonMobil YMCA. 

But for more information on this event, you can visit the YMCA website here.

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