Eat REAL’s #RainbowTacoChallenge Promotes Food Access, Joyful Cooking with Colorful Foods, and Social Connectivity

Dozens of celebrity chefs, athletes and artists join in and voice enthusiastic support for the initiative, which officially kicks off on ‘Taco Tuesday’ — April 14

OAKLAND, Calif. – Monday, April 13, 2020: As the COVID-19 pandemic continues and families across the country shelter-in-place, staying healthy and supporting strong immune systems is more essential than ever. To inspire healthy eating among families and to support school foodservice workers that are providing meals to families, the nonprofit organization Eat REAL is launching a social media campaign—the #RainbowTacoChallenge

Anybody can participate by posting Instagram videos or photos of their creations and challenging up to five friends to join in and can donate to the cause by texting “rainbow” to 52886 (or visiting eatreal.org/donate).

#RainbowTacoChallenge builds on the recent rainbow movement that has become a sign of hope and brings it into the kitchen by connecting people through food and creative fun. On Tuesday, April 14, notable celebrity chefs, artists, athletes and role-models will join doctors and nutritionists to whip up a colorful taco dish based on what they have on hand in their kitchen. 

All donations from the #RainbowTacoChallenge will go to Eat REAL to help schools distribute nutritious meals to low-income—and suddenly no-income—families and students who increasingly depend on meals via school pickup or delivery. 

The movement promotes real food access and being creative with what food you have on hand. Already, more than 30 celebrity chefs, athletes, artists, entrepreneurs, doctors, and nutritionists are supporting and promoting the challenge.

Among them is Forbes 30 Under 30 entrepreneur CEO Laureen Asseo: “This social media challenge is going to inspire so many families and make a big difference in helping safely increase food access during this crisis. That’s why I’m thrilled to be cooking on Instagram for such a good cause.”

“We are working to rally kids and families around cooking healthy meals and to support donations to help Eat REAL get meals delivered safely to more families in need,” said celebrity chef and restaurateur, Aaron May. “#RainbowTacoChallenge is a simple and fun challenge in which families introduce themselves and showcase their colorful, plated taco, and then can nominate friends to take the challenge within 24 hours and donate to Eat REAL, if they can.”

“I’ve been volunteering with local organizations and schools to distribute meals to families in my community so I’m fully aware of how many kids are experiencing food insecurity right now,” noted Alexis Krauss, singer of the band Sleigh Bells, outdoor educator and co-founder of Young Women Who Crush, a climbing and leadership organization serving NYC high school students. “I’m so excited to slay some tacos on Tuesday for this critical cause.”

A nutritious diet, filled with an array of colorful vegetables, fruits, and whole grains is one of the best ways to support our immune systems,” said Alan Greene, MD, a noted pediatrician, author, and board member of Eat REAL. “Eating healthy, nutritious meals is especially critical for families to stay healthy during this pandemic, so that’s why Eat REAL’s initiative to safely provide access to healthier food is so important.”

More than 1,000 schools have asked Eat REAL to help them stay safe and open to provide food for families in need. Every $100 helps Eat REAL to support another school in its COVID-19 program. For every $1 raised, Eat REAL can help ten meals be delivered safely.

 

Thanks to our #RainbowTacoChallenge Partners

Eat REAL has partnered with several companies and organizations who have offered their resources in support of the #RainbowTacoChallenge. Phone2Action enabled the technology for donations—text rainbow to 52886—which is a cornerstone of this social media challenge. Raley’s, the wellness-focused Northern California grocery chain, is a key donor partner for this initiative. The global design firm IDEO helped design the challenge as a way to encourage cooking confidence and give people ways to spread joy and connectivity. 

“When coming up with the intent and purpose of the challenge, we were inspired by how kids are joining the #covidrainbow movement, creating rainbows in windows across the country and posting them on social media,” explained Meija Jacobs, senior director for IDEO’s food group. “We are excited that this creative challenge can take that movement into the kitchen and inspire families to create nutritious meals during this pandemic and beyond.”

 

School Districts can request support and masks for their workers and volunteers. If you are interested in donating to this effort, please contact beth@eatreal.org

 

About Eat REAL

Eat REAL® is a 501(c) (3) Public Health and food access nonprofit organization based in Oakland, California. Eat REAL is dedicated to increasing real food access in K-12 schools, creating a healthier next generation and planet. Launched in 2012, Eat REAL Certified is a nutrition and sustainability best practices certification program working with school district foodservice leaders to raise the bar and make food in schools more nutritious and sustainable. The organization’s real food certification core program supports over 237 schools across California and the United States to increase real food access and education with financial support from Battery Powered, Raley’s Food for Families Foundation, Walmart Foundation, WeWorkForGood, with support from donors through Eat REAL’s COVID-19 response campaign. More information can be found at www.eatreal.org

 

CONTACT: Tim Cox, ZingPR for Eat REAL, 650-888-6116, tim@zingpr.com

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