Green Springs Eternal

Green Springs Eternal

by Karen Klaus, Director of Development
Operation Food Search

Being “green” means considering the possible impact of our actions on the planet and choosing to live in a way that leaves the smallest footprint. We think of reusing, recycling and reducing.

Also, when we think “green” we often think of spring! The color green symbolizes nature, growth, harmony, freshness and fertility. Combine both concepts and voila! – You have a fresh take on clothing courtesy of Rung and Sprung boutiques modeled by Operation Food Search nutritionists and friends.
Operation Food Search, Rung, and Sprung are all intrinsically green!

Since its inception, Operation Food Search has rescued food no longer saleable, yet safe, nutritious and edible. The organization immediately distributes this food to emergency food pantries, shelters and soup kitchens to get it onto the plates of hungry individuals and families throughout the St. Louis region. This operation has saved tons of good food from going into landfill to use for a higher purpose – to nourish our neighbors in need.

Rung brings fashion full circle and provides women with an uplifting experience by offering upcycled professional attire at affordable prices in a fun boutique atmosphere. A significant portion of Rung’s net profits support the Women’s Foundation of Greater St. Louis to be granted out to women’s charities. Likewise, its offshoot Sprung supports families by offering affordable and fashionable maternity and kids’ attire with proceeds benefiting Nurses for Newborns.

Operation Food Search, Rung and Sprung are happy to partner for this green fashion shoot that highlights the culinary-based nutrition education outreach and child-focused hunger relief programs of Operation Food Search. We hope our feature has the virtues that will leave you feeling refreshed, renewed and inspired!

Cooking Matters® is led by Operation Food Search’s registered dietitians and staff chef, along with volunteer chefs, dietetic interns and culinary students, and people who love to cook, to annually provide nutrition education and outreach to thousands of low-income adults and children. This robust, culinary-based program empowers individuals and families with skills, knowledge and confidence to prepare healthy, affordable meals. These hands-on class sessions encourage self-sufficiency and provide education on the best foods for optimal nutrition, basic cooking and food budgeting.

Cooking Matters® at the Store is a guided grocery store tour program at Shop ‘n Save led by an Operation Food Search dietitian. Participants learn how to affordably buy fruits and vegetables, compare prices, understand food labels, and identify whole grains, while sticking to a budget to maximize food dollars for optimal nutrition and health.

Operation Backpack
Operation Backpack helps children get their school week off to a great start, well-nourished and ready to learn! This Operation Food Search program feeds hungry children by providing weekly backpacks full of food for the weekend to children at risk for hunger and food insecurity at schools in the City of St. Louis, St. Louis County, St. Charles County, Franklin County, St. Clair County (IL) and at Head Start sites. Each backpack include nutritious, kid-friendly, easy-to-prepare foods and “easy-to-digest” nutrition information. Backpacks often include essential health and hygiene products and items that encourage physical activity, including toothbrushes, toothpaste, Frisbees and jump ropes. Launched in 2008, this program served 4,000 children in the 2012/2013 school year.

In tandem with Operation Backpack, to broaden the reach of Operation Food Search’s child-focused nutrition activities, the organization services 29 satellite partners that follow the OFS backpack model. Operation Food Search provides these partners, comprised of schools, church groups and PTA programs, with milk and cereal to facilitate additional feeding programs. OFS also provides emergency food bags for a School Food Cupboard program, in a partnership with the Little Bit Foundation that is administered at twelve schools, and to Crisis Nursery to meet immediate nutrition needs.

Operation Food Search is the local ally in Share Our Strength’s nationwide anti-hunger advocacy campaign, No Kid Hungry®. Embracing the goal to end childhood hunger, Operation Food Search actively engages a growing network of supporters and programs to feed hungry children, is a voice for our most vulnerable citizens, and is helping to break down barriers that prevent children from accessing the food they need.

Green Springs Eternal photo feature Sponsored by: City Publications
Concept & Artistic Direction: Karen Klaus, Operation Food Search
Photography: J. Pollack Photography / jpollackphoto.com
Makeup Artists: LaTausha Ayuso-Curtis, Jennifer Yeargain, Pamela Johnson
Stylist: Erica Dunk, Owner/Designer, HyperHaute / hyperhaute.com
Models – Operation Food Search Nutritionists & Friends:
Melissa Mobley, MPH – Operation Backpack Coordinator
Christina Popp, MPH, RD, LD – Cooking Matters® at the Store Coordinator
Jocquelyn Benson – Operation Food Search Associate Board Member
Jaynea Brooks and Rachel Clay • Children – Freddie, Lulu, Graham, and Bea
Photos shot on location at Shop ‘n Save, and at New City School
To learn more about Operation Food Search visit www.OperationFoodSearch.org
Visit Rung and Sprung 9739 Manchester Road in Rock Hill • www.ShopRung.org