Teal Pumpkin ProjectTM
The Teal Pumpkin Project, launched in the U.S. in 2014, promotes the inclusion of all trick-or-treaters, including those with food allergies, diabetes and celiac disease, while also raising awareness about food allergies. Organizations like Food Allergy Canada encourage Canadians to participate, too. About 1 in 13 children have food allergies, more than 25,000 have diagnosed diabetes, and countless others have celiac disease.,, These conditions can make trick-or-treating a difficult and sometimes dangerous affair.
Participating in the Teal Pumpkin Project, by offering non-food treats for trick-or-treaters, helps make Halloween a safe and enjoyable celebration for all children. Placing a teal-coloured pumpkin on your clinic counter or outside your door lets everyone know you’re a Teal Pumpkin Project participant. Organizations looking to join this movement will find several other ideas on how to participate:
Teal pumpkin participation:
- Offer non-food treats: If your organization hands out treats to trick-or-treaters, consider offering non-food options. The possibilities are endless; however, if you need some ideas, glow sticks, stickers and bubbles are sure to delight parents and children, alike. Just be sure to avoid items like play dough (it often contains wheat) and anything latex (as it is a known allergen). If you also offer candy, use separate bowls for food and non-food items.
- Hold a pumpkin colouring contest: Kids are sure to enjoy participating in a pumpkin colouring contest while they wait. Stencils and colouring sheets are available for download here. Award participants with a prize draw for a stuffed animal or walking pet. And proudly display your patients’ works of art in your clinic while at the same time spreading the word about the Teal Pumpkin Project.
- Encourage the support of others: Let your social media friends and followers know you support (and will participate in) the Teal Pumpkin Project. Encourage them to do the same. Consider posting a question such as: “What are your favourite non-food items to hand out at Halloween?” Or, invite others to share pictures of their teal pumpkins. Enter those who do into a contest for a logo’d sportspack (any) or travel mug . Use cover photos, sharable images and the hashtag #tealpumpkinproject to show additional support. You also can print any of several downloadable signs and flyers for free.
These simple tips can make Halloween a safe and happy time for all children. Will your organization be joining the Teal Pumpkin Project
 “Teal Pumpkin Project™ – Food Allergy Research & Education.” Teal Pumpkin Project™ – Food Allergy Research & Education. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 May 2016. <http://www.foodallergy.org/teal-pumpkin-project#.VzxDmBUrKqC>.
 “Facts and Statistics – Food Allergy Research & Education.” Facts and Statistics – Food Allergy Research & Education. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 May 2016. <https://www.foodallergy.org/facts-and-stats>.
 “Statistics About Diabetes.” American Diabetes Association. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 May 2016. <http://www.diabetes.org/diabetes-basics/statistics/>.
 “Diabetes in Canada: Facts and Figures from a Public Health Perspective.” Public Health Agency of Canada. N.d. Web. 27 May 2016. <http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/cd-mc/publications/diabetes-diabete/facts-figures-faits-chiffres-2011/chap5-eng.php>
 “Teal Pumpkin Project™ – Ideas for Non Food Treats – Food Allergy Research & Education.” Teal Pumpkin Project™ – Ideas for Non Food Treats – Food Allergy Research & Education. N.p., n.d. Web. 18 May 2016. <http://www.foodallergy.org/teal-pumpkin-project/ideas-for-non-food-treats#.VzxMURUrKqA>.
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