SNAP Education and Evaluation Case Study Report: New York State Department of Health’s Eat Well Play Hard in Child Care Settings Program

Vivian Gabor et al.
Eat Well Play Hard in Child Care Settings (EWPHCCS) is a SNAP-Ed nutrition education program conducted by the New York State Department of Health since 2006. This childcare center based program is designed to change the knowledge, attitudes, and skills of preschool children and their parents and caregivers to increase children’s consumption of fruits and vegetables, ensure that children drink 1% or fat-free milk rather than milk with higher fat content, increase the amount of time that young children spend in physical activity, and decrease the amount of time they spend watching television. The program is implemented over a 6–10 week period at each center and includes six classes for children, six classes and take-home materials for parents and caregivers, and at least two classes for childcare center staff. Each child lesson includes food tastings and other hands-on activities, and the parent classes and materials include food preparation activities, recipes, and other activities for parents to engage their children in healthy eating and physical activity. The program also has a focus on changing the child care center environment to reinforce EWPHCCS messages at mealtimes and in the classroom. In Federal fiscal year 2010, EWPHCCS was implemented in 246 childcare centers in 26 counties and four New York City boroughs. That year the program served approximately 10,000 children and their parents and caregivers at an estimated cost of $296 per child. A sample of 12 intervention centers (six within and six outside New York City) was included in an independent evaluation of EWPHCCS to examine the implementation and impact of the program. This case report presents a summary and discussion of the key findings
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