First lady to put child victims of Hurricane Sandy to work

The White House announced Thursday that first lady Michelle Obama will be welcome the child victims of Hurricane Sandy to the White House Kitchen Garden and put them to work harvesting the summer crop.

According to a White House press announcement, the children affected by Hurricane Sandy from two New Jersey communities will be joining children from across the country who helped plant the garden in April assist with the harvest.

The students who planted the crops and are returning to pick them hail from Massachusetts, Tennessee, Vermont andWashington, DC.

“Mrs. Obama planted a vegetable garden on the South Lawn to initiate a national conversation around the health and wellbeing [sic] of our nation – a conversation that evolved into her Let’s Move! initiative to solve the problem of childhood obesity within a generation,” the press announcement reads.

The children will join the first lady to harvest the crops on Tuesday afternoon. The children affected by Hurricane Sandy are coming from Union Beach Memorial School in Union Beach, N.J., and Long Beach Island Grade School in Ship Bottom, N.J.

The White House described these schools’ focus on healthy eating:

Union Beach Memorial School – Union Beach, NJ

The students of Union Beach Memorial School were displaced by Hurricane Sandy and currently attend school in other locations while their school is repaired. Through the displacement, Union Beach school district is focused on keeping their students healthy. The school district is providing all its displaced students with a free lunch through the National School Lunch Program until they return to Memorial School, and in March, 8th grade students from the school joined New Jersey and USDA officials to celebrate National Nutrition Month. Recently, volunteers planted herb and vegetable beds at Memorial School for the students to utilize upon their return to the school.

Long Beach Island Grade School – Ship Bottom, NJ

Since Hurricane Sandy, all of the LBI Grade School students (grades 3-6) have been attending their sister school, the Ethel A. Jacobsen Elementary School, which is PreK-2.  They are awaiting their modular classroom units due to storm damage to their school. Despite the displacement, the school was recognized with the HealthierUS School Challenge award in March of 2013. The school uses MyPlate to teach kids about healthy eating, and they provide ideas for healthy classroom snacking while partaking in their home-grown crops at the EJ School. The district will also be receiving an award from the USDA officials in June 2013. 

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