“Our image among health professionals has just skyrocketed since we put GENYOUth together,” stated Tom Gallagher. “The top 10 professional health organizations are all on the advisory board for GENYOUth,” the Dairy Management CEO went on to say to dairy farmers attending the 2019 GENYOUth Gala.
“We’ve always had a great relationship with the health professionals,” Gallagher explained. “Since they saw us put GENYOUth together and its Grab and Go School Breakfast program, that relationship has skyrocketed because they see us doing good for dairy, but more importantly, they see us doing good for children.”
Increased access to over 36 million nutritious meals among at-risk youth
“We all know sustainable nutrition, particularly for food insecure youth, is one of the most important things we can do as an organization,” Alexis Glick, CEO of GENYOUth, confirmed. “We have increased access to approximately 36 million meals for kids who need it most,” she said, noting the good work done in just the past year via GENYOUth and the Fuel Up to Play 60 program. Many of these children are food insecure, meaning they don’t have regular access to food. Without the proper nutrition, children cannot excel at school.
Dairy is the catalyst
“While we are deeply honored by the valuable contributions from the dairy industry, you are going to find a lot of new faces in the room tonight,” she said of the gala that was about to begin at the American Museum of Natural History. “Some of which you are going to say, ‘Oh my gosh, they (those faces) are America’s dairy farmers’ partners?’”
And of the money that was raised through the gala, less than 10 percent of it came from the dairy industry, yet dairy is at the core of GENYOUth. It speaks to the importance of partnerships and the value of good nutrition.
“I just want you to know that there is no one who knows more about how hard this year has been for dairy farmers,” Glick said in recognizing the unwavering commitment of dairy farmers on behalf of the health and wellness of our nation’s children.
“I want you to know we will do everything in our power to ensure that what we built together is successful for decades to come because you were the ones to give us this chance to make an impact on the next generation. The fact that you are still doing that in the toughest of times is the best model for folks in this room to see tonight,” Glick went on to say about GENYOUth and the partnership between America’s dairy farmers and the National Football League (NFL).
It’s about the kids
“At the end of the day, when you look at this room tonight, this is not about glamour and glitz, and it’s not about a show. This is about kids. You are going to see kids who dazzle you,” she said of the December 4 event.
“What we are telling these kids is that we believe in them and we believe that they have the right to start the day with a healthy breakfast, including milk. They shouldn’t be food insecure and their only meal shouldn’t be school lunch.
“Of course, they should have more than that. Kids being physically inactive is a crisis.
“What are we doing about it?” asked Glick.
“We need equipment and resources to overcome these issues. We have to give them a leg up. That is what you are doing . . . you are investing in this next generation. I know it’s hard to look around during these challenging financial times, but I wanted you to know that you are changing these kids’ lives. I see it every day. I want you to know — Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!” she exclaimed.
To view highlights of the GENYOUth Gala, click on this link: https://vimeo.com/380544784.