It may seem hard to believe but Halloween is just around the corner. What is often a fun and exciting time for most children can be stressful and disappointing for kids with food allergies. Many adults do their best to buy treats that all kids can enjoy but for many with food allergies, they simply cannot take the chance of eating something that could cause a reaction. Lots of kids with food allergies end up handing over much of their Halloween haul to family members because they can't safely eat it. Fortunately, there's a recent initiative for kids with food allergies that are offering a safe zone this Halloween.
What Is The Teal Pumpkin For Halloween About?
The Teal Pumpkin Project first began back in 2012 as a way for children with food allergies to safely trick or treat. Since teal is the color of food allergy awareness, Becky Basalone, the director of a local food allergy support group decided she would paint a pumpkin teal to indicate that she had non-food treats available for anyone who had a food allergy. Food Allergy Research and Education, or FARE, began promoting the idea in 2014 and since then it has become an internationally recognized way for food allergy sufferers to know if a house has non-food related items available for trick or treating.
How To Participate In The Teal Pumpkin For Halloween
FARE offers many ideas for what sorts of treats families can give out as alternatives to candy, including stickers, pens, bouncy balls, mini-notepads, bubbles and more. Homes that would like to participate in the Teal Pumpkin project can even add their location to a map that helps those with food allergies more easily identify homes where they can receive non-food items as treats.
As Halloween approaches, consider adding non-food treats, like toys and stickers, to what you’ll be giving trick-or-treaters this year! Participate in our #TealPumpkinProject and check out this resource to make Halloween inclusive for all. https://t.co/Kx5Cy4gNsh pic.twitter.com/o3Smmyp1Aj— FARE (@FoodAllergy) October 6, 2019
Lisa Gable, chief executive of FARE told Forbes Magazine that the teal pumpkin acts as a beacon for those children who have food allergies on what is truly one of the most exciting nights of the year for kids. “You can paint a pumpkin teal, you can buy a teal pumpkin,” she said. “What it signals is you have non-food treats in addition to candy,” she said.
View this post on Instagram
The #TealPumpkinProject helps children with #foodallergies feel included in Halloween celebrations. Share an image of your child dressed in their Halloween costume or holding a teal pumpkin along with 8-10 “ingredients” that show what they are made of - you can even include a Halloween-specific ingredient. Send to ContainsCourage@foodallergy.org and we may share it across our social channels! #halloween #tealpumpkin #foodallergy #foodallergylife #foodallergymom #foodallergymama #inclusion #ContainsCourage #TrickorTreat
Teal Pumpkin For Food Allergies At Halloween
She added that it's also a great way to open up the conversation about food allergies and food sensitivities and how many kids it affects. “It’s an educational moment to highlight why it’s important and the fact that it’s becoming a public-health crisis,” she noted. “I would hope and anticipate that children with other diseases around food would find this an activity that makes them feel safe and included, too,” Gable added.
“It’s an educational moment to highlight why [food allergies are] important and the fact that it’s becoming a public-health crisis” - FARE CEO @lisagable. Read about the #TealPumpkinProject and how families can make Halloween safer and more inclusive. https://t.co/65ScD5aUFR— FARE (@FoodAllergy) October 5, 2019
If you'd like to participate in the Teal Pumpkin Project consider adding your location to the map and placing your teal pumpkin on your front step or where it's visible to children and help all kids enjoy a safe and happy Halloween this year.
Read Next: 10 Hacks For Your Leftover Halloween Candy