I know this has absolutely nothing to do with design or furniture, but the Teal Pumpkin Project is an awareness campaign started by FARE (Food Allergy Research & Education) that is near and dear to my heart. For those who aren’t familiar with the Teal Pumpkin Project, it is a new tradition that will hopefully encourage people to raise awareness of food allergies by painting a pumpkin teal (the color of food allergy awareness) and placing it on their front porch. The teal pumpkin is a symbol to alert trick-or-treaters that non-food treats are available.
The reason this campaign is so important to me is because my 4 year old has a severe/life-threatening allergy to peanuts and tree nuts. When my daughter was only 15 months old, she had a full-blown anaphylactic reaction to a TINY bite of a peanut butter cookie. It was terrifying and took us completely by surprise. Today, she is no different than any other healthy 4 year old. She is silly, mischievous and full of laughter…she just has to pay closer attention to what she eats and to what food is near her.
Make no mistake, the Teal Pumpkin Project is NOT trying to outlaw candy at Halloween…it’s just trying to raise a little awareness and help ALL kids enjoy the night. According to FARE’s website, “The Teal Pumpkin Project is designed to promote safety, inclusion and respect of individuals managing food allergies – and to keep Halloween a fun, positive experience for all.”
Did you know it is estimated that around 15 million Americans have food allergies? Or that food allergies affect 1 in every 13 children (under the age of 18)? That’s 2 kids in every classroom! Astounding, isn’t it?
This morning, I was elated to see the Instagram picture I took of our own little teal pumpkin featured on FARE’s blog! It’s exciting to see our pumpkin help raise awareness for so such a great cause. Plus, it’s just a pretty picture.
We have a plethora of glow sticks, temporary monster tattoos and yes, even some allergen-friendly candy ready to pass out to all the little goblins who ring our doorbell on Halloween night.
Wishing you all safety and fun on October 31st!
FARE is thrilled that so many families across the country are planning to participate in the Teal Pumpkin Project! The idea is simple –pick up some inexpensive toys (ideas can be found on our website), paint a pumpkin teal and place it and a free, downloadable sign from FARE in front of your home to show that you have non-food treats to hand out.
The campaign has been tremendously popular on social media – reaching nearly 5 million people on Facebook – and has been featured by national and local media across the country. Here are just a few of the articles, news clips, and radio spots that have helped promote this fantastic campaign for inclusion:
Teal pumpkins try to change Halloween for kids with food allergies (CNN.com)
How to Make Halloween Less Scary for Food Allergies (ABCNews.com)
Teal pumpkins make Halloween safer for kids with food allergies (TODAY.com)
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