HEALTHY EATING: Showing kids the joys of eating fruit and veg is a great first step to beating cancer.
HEALTHY EATING: Showing kids the joys of eating fruit and veg is a great first step to beating cancer. Chris Ison ROK191012cfruit2

Helping families prevent the scourge of cancer

VOLUNTEER positions are now open to assist Cancer Council NSW put their public enemy number one in its place.

Using the healthy eating program Eat It To Beat It, Northern NSW Nutrition project officer Juanita Nantes is calling on Coffs Coast students and community members to join up as volunteer facilitators.

"Eat It And Beat It provides valuable career experience and social rewards while helping hundreds of families improve their diet and cut cancer risk,” she said.

"As trained program facilitators, volunteers would run free workshops for parents at primary schools in the community.

"They give families ideas, skills and resources to include more fruit and vegetables in lunch boxes and the household diet.”

NSW Health statistics reveal in the Coffs Coast region. seven per cent of children don't eat enough vegetables and 33 per cent don't eat enough fruit.

Juanita is confident this can be reversed by program facilitators playing an important role in improving the health of children and families.

"In spreading the message about eating the recommended two serves of fruit and five serves of vegetables every day, program facilitators are helping families and children reduce their cancer risk and maintain their health.

"In return they receive support and mentoring from an experienced team of health professionals, learn valuable personal and presentation skills and make a contribution to the Coffs Coast community.”

MaryEllen is the Coffs Harbour program facilitator.

"Volunteering appealed to me as I had already educated children about healthy foods,” she said.

"However there was a gap with education for parents.

"A few mums were working and while they tried to choose healthy packaged foods, they found it hard not knowing how to create a healthier, more natural choice with such limited time.

"It's a nice opportunity to share information with families.”

The next program facilitator training will be held on Thursday, March 1, at the Coffs Harbour Cancer Council office, 121 West High Street.

Training and resources are free of charge, lunch is provided and reimbursement for travel is available.

For information call Juanita on 6639 1306 or email