Fresh on DeK Finds Success Pairing Healthy Eating and Staying Active
When you commit to making smart food choices, other healthy behaviors naturally fall into place. That’s the concept motivating Fresh on DeK, a nonprofit organization headquartered in DeKalb County, Georgia committed to bringing education and fresh produce to food deserts throughout their community via their DeKalb County Mobile Market. DeKalb County has a population of over 750,000, with over half its residents identifying as African American. The poverty rate in the county is well above the national average, which makes finding and purchasing fresh, unprocessed foods difficult.
In 2022, Fresh on DeK provided over eleven thousand bags of free pre-bagged produce to DeKalb County residents, a huge accomplishment and major milestone for the organization.
But Fresh on DeK offers more than fresh produce and educational resources. Last year, the team behind Fresh on DeK supplemented their messaging with information about other behaviors that contribute to an overall healthy lifestyle.
Jamille B. Hawkins, DeKalb County Cooperative Extension Family and Consumer Sciences Agent, heard about the Monday Campaigns and the Move It Monday approach to physical activity from a webinar at the National Extension Association for Family and Consumer Science (NEAFCS) in March 2022, and believed the fun graphics and activities could be used to increase engagement with their social media audience on Facebook and Instagram. Since their adoption, the Move It Monday materials have performed well, with the highest engagement on the activities related to walking and exercise safety.
Sharing the content every Monday and Thursday has been an effective way to keep their audience on track, notes a member of the Fresh on DeK management team. Breaking down long-term health goals into small, attainable steps prevents discouragement and helps users get into the mindset that they can make real progress if they stay committed to positive change. Fresh on DeK remains a great example of how a holistic, harmonious approach to wellness can make a big impact.