Healthy eating is on the menu at nursery

DM1504043a Africa Day at Little Rascals Nursery, Worthing. Celebrating getting an Eat out, Eat well Gold Award. Photo by Derek Martin SUS-150526-164620008
DM1504043a Africa Day at Little Rascals Nursery, Worthing. Celebrating getting an Eat out, Eat well Gold Award. Photo by Derek Martin SUS-150526-164620008

CHILDREN and staff at a Worthing nursery have been banging the drum for healthy eating this week.

Pre-school tots from Little Rascals Day Nursery in Chesswood Road were treated to a South African drumming and cookery workshop on Tuesday, courtesy of former nursery parent Leigh Walter.

It came at the same time the nursery was celebrating scooping an Eat Out Eat Well gold award. The scheme was launched in February last year to ensure adults and children have access to nutritious meal options.

Nursery manager Bridgit Brown said: “Its great to have the parental support that we do here at the nursery to enhance the children’s learning of cultures and celebrations from around the world. The children love cooking and exploring new ingredients, so they really enjoyed the African experience today!

We have looked closely at out menus, listened to feedback from our parents and children and are really proud of the menus and healthy choices we are offering to the children on a daily basis. To receive the recognition from the council as well through the Eat Out Eat Well initiative, cements are healthy lifestyle and eating approach.”

The Eat Out Eat Well award it given to caterers and cooks who increase their use of fruit, vegetables and starchy carbohydrates, while limiting their use of fats, sugars and salts. It also encourages healthy options for children and rewards.

Sue Young, know as Big Cook Sue, is the cook at Little Rascals, and she said she was thrilled to win the award.

“It’s lovely to see the children trying new dishes and ingredients through the recipes that we have included on the menus. It was great working with the nutritionists from the council who came in to assess the menus and cooking procedures”, she said.

Nicky Lewis, whose 20-month-old daughter Anika goes to Little Rascals, was full of praise for the food.

“Anika has been at Little Rascals for approximately eight months.

“Food is very important to her, and at the end of the day the reports we get back from her key worker are always that she ate everything.

“Our other child left the nursery two years ago and still has some favourite nursery meals that I now also make at home (thanks to the handy recipe cards that the nursery make available).

“Big Cook Sue prepares fresh food daily for the children and the meals offered are regularly reviewed and the menus changed, taking advantage of seasonal changes in fresh produce.

“Fresh fruit and healthy snacks are also served between main meals introducing the children to a variety of textures and flavours.”

During the workshop, some of the older children at the nursery got to play traditional South African instruments and made milk cookies to eat.

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