The Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) is a federally funded program that provides nutrition education to limited resource families with children in the Harris County area. Nationally, this program is known as the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP). This program is administered by the Texas AgriLife Extension Service.
The purpose and mission of the EFNEP Adult program is to reach out and teach limited resource families with young children and provide food and nutrition education. Using hands on experiences, in a small group setting, participants attend a seven-lesson series on stretching food dollars, improving eating habits, managing food budgets, food preparation and food safety principles.
Nutrition Education Assistants and Associates work and provide these lessons in communities, clinics, neighborhood centers, community centers, hospitals, child care centers, shelters, food pantries, churches, schools and other sites convenient to participants.
Studies have shown that for every $1 spent for EFNEP, $10 was estimated to be saved in health care costs and $2 saved in food costs by participants. For Harris County, this equals to more than $8 million in estimated health care cost savings and more than $1 million savings in food cost.
There is no charge to participants for EFNEP instruction, but partner agencies often provide meeting space, office support, use of equipment or other resources for classes. Participants commit to attend at least 7 hours of lessons, usually about one hour per week.
The Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program – Youth is directed toward limited resource youth ages 6-19. This program is taught by trained volunteers. These students participate in a series of six fun and educational lessons on good nutrition and food safety. They are presented lessons to boost their self-esteem and develop leadership skills.
Our staff provides training to volunteer leaders in churches, schools, community centers, parks, libraries, YMCA, YWCA, home and after-school programs. We also place a strong emphasis on pre and post test evaluations that provide a measurement of progress.