The Prince’s Charities Australia has partnered with the E.O.N. Foundation (EON) as a supporter and advocate of their Thriving Communities program.
Fewer than half of Indigenous Australian families meet the recommendations for daily fruit intake, and 92 per cent have inadequate daily vegetable intake. Food insecurity has been shown to affect attendance and academic achievement in children, both in ability upon commencement at school, and in learning throughout the year. Indigenous Australians experience some of the highest levels of ear disease and hearing loss in the world, with rates up to ten times more than those from non-Indigenous Australians. Malnutrition and undernourishment are major contributing factors to chronic disease and high mortality rates in Indigenous and Torres Strait Islander communities. Early intervention is vital, and good nutrition is the key to healthy brain development in infants. Sufficient nutrition gives children a better chance at learning, which in turn improves their education, future work and outlook on life.
The EON Foundation, a West Australian based not-for-profit organisation, works closely with remote Indigenous schools and communities to implement a holistic educational approach to nutrition. Thriving Communities was created to combat the poor health conditions and lack of nutritional knowledge often faced by remote Indigenous communities. The program includes the construction and maintenance of edible gardens, nutrition and cooking classes, and hygiene education.
In 2016, EON has welcomed five new communities to the program, including Marble Bar, Nullagine, Hedland Senior High School in the Pilbara region, Yiyili and Jarlmadanga Burru in the Kimberley region. In August 2016, EON partnered with Western Australia Country Health Service to host an interschool cooking competition between three Pilbara communities. Students from Yandeyarra Remote Community School, Strelley Community School (Warralong Campus)and South Hedland Primary School had an opportunity to showcase produce from their school’s ‘EON edible gardens’ and demonstrate their cooking skills.
EON’s team continue to work closely to build positive, long-term relationships with its local communities. Project managers have facilitated more than 500 lessons and workshops with children and their families this past year. Thriving Communities is now established in 20 remote Aboriginal communities in Western Australia, with many more on the waiting list wishing to join the program.
If you would be interested in helping to support EON, please do contact us by clicking here.