VCP’s SNAP-Ed Team

Last week Vetri Community Partnership’s SNAP-Ed team attended the 2024 Pennsylvania Nutrition Education Network (PA NEN) annual conference in Lancaster, PA, where SNAP-Ed providers, nutrition educators, and public health professionals gathered to share research, best practices, challenges, and insights into SNAP-Ed in Pennsylvania. The theme for this year’s conference was Nourishing the Roots – Reflecting, Connecting, and Affecting in PA SNAP-Ed.

VCP’s SNAP-Ed Team enjoying lunch in Lancaster

On the first day of the conference, Vetri Community Partnership staff took part in an international food tour where they tasted their way through the streets of downtown Lancaster while learning about immigrants and refugees who launched local food businesses in the area.

At the conference, Vetri Community Partnership staff heard a heart-felt Keynote Address from Barbie Izquierdo who is the Director of Advocacy & Neighbor’s Engagement at Feeding America and a Member of the President’s Council on Sports, Fitness & Nutrition. Her call for “giving a voice to those who have not been given a place at the table” was motivating and set the intention for the conference.

Tara Bledsoe leading the “Cooking Together in PA SNAP-Ed” presentation

During the breakout sessions, VCP’s Community Dietitian, Tara Bledsoe, co-led a presentation with Katie Belazis from The Food Trust entitled “Cooking Together in PA SNAP-Ed”. Each shared information about the implementation and evaluation of their organization’s virtual family cooking interventions.

Lacey Cornell (left) receiving her award for Collaboration Excellence with Tara Bledsoe (right)

To wrap up the conference, PA NEN gave SNAP-Ed organizations the opportunity to recognize outstanding staff members for their achievements. Vetri Community Partnership honored Lacey Cornell, SNAP-Ed Senior Program Manager, with the award for Collaboration Excellence for her work in strengthening connections with our SNAP-Ed partners. Congratulations, Lacey!