Houston, TX – Brighter Bites, a nonprofit organization that delivers fresh fruits, vegetables and nutrition education resources directly into families’ hands, hosted a virtual fundraising event – Get Smart in the Kitchen – on Sunday, April 11.
The event featured Marcia Smart, developer and chef of Smart in the Kitchen, who prepared three simple and nutritious meals using fresh ingredients that can be found in Brighter Bites’ produce boxes. Also engaged on screen were Brighter Bites’ Founder and Board Chair, Lisa Helfman, Brighter Bites’ Board Member and President of H-E-B Food/Drug Scott McClelland, and Houston Life Co-Host Courtney Zavala.
“The Get Smart in the Kitchen virtual event featured healthy and delicious recipes that incorporated the same produce being distributed to our students and families this spring,” said Lisa Helfman, Founder and Board Chair of Brighter Bites. “This fundraiser provided an ideal opportunity to not only engage our existing Brighter Bites community but also increase awareness around our organization and mission among new audiences.”
Brighter Bites was honored to have the support of three major donors, Cadence Bank, Memorial Hermann, and philanthropist Regina Rogers as well as the support of over 100 individual donors/participants. In total, the event raised approximately $40,000.
Brighter Bites is dedicated to creating healthy communities by providing produce and nutrition literacy to families in cities throughout the country. The organization works with over 120 schools in seven cities, providing approximately 25 pounds of fresh, seasonal produce and nutrition education on a weekly basis to each family. Brighter Bites families are actively engaged in the program, with data proving they consume significantly more fresh produce and are talking about nutrition more often in their homes, too.
During the early days of the COVID-19 crisis, Brighter Bites stayed committed to providing fresh produce to the 25,000 families enrolled in its programming. The organization also reached much further into its cities by opening produce distributions to full communities and offering nutrition education via its newly developed app. Since its founding in 2012 the nonprofit has provided over 40 million pounds of produce. Brighter Bites currently operates in schools, camps, and after-school programs in Houston, Dallas, Austin, Southwest Florida, New York City, the Washington, D.C. metro area, and Salinas, California.
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About Brighter Bites:
Brighter Bites is a nonprofit that creates communities of health through fresh food with the goal of changing behavior among children and their families to prevent obesity and achieve long-term health. Brighter Bites is an evidence-based, multi-component elementary school, preschool, and summer camp program that utilizes reliable access to fruits and vegetables, nutrition education, and consistent exposure to recipes and messages that feature fresh food. Since 2012, Brighter Bites has provided more than 40 million pounds of produce and millions of nutrition education materials to more than 475,000 individuals (including teachers) in Houston, Dallas, Austin, New York City, the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan area, and Southwest Florida. In 2021 Brighter Bites expanded its programming to Salinas, California. To learn more about Brighter Bites visit www.brighterbites.org.
The Regina Rogers donation was given with admiration and love in honor of the extraordinary Lisa Helfman.