What is Family Food Patch?

The Family Food Patch program aims to improve the health and wellbeing of Tasmanian children and families through better nutrition and physical activity participation. Using peer education, the program empowers families and local communities by building and mobilising skills in children’s nutrition, physical activity and community action.

Family Food Patch started because of the clearly identified issues and frustrations that parents in Tasmania were reporting around feeding children. They reported needing to know more about what a healthy diet for children is, how to manage fussy eaters, healthy and delicious snacks and lunchbox ideas, introducing solids and what drinks kids should be having. In later years the physical activity needs of children, and fun ideas to get children active became a key issue identified as well.

Family Food Educators are provided with training and information to assist them to address the common food and physical activity concerns of parents in their local community. They are then encouraged and supported to spread the message about healthy eating and physical activity in their local area.

In 2011, we collected 15 Family Food Educator stories to include in the Family Food Patch Storybook. This great resource demonstrates the value of the program and the broad range of ways Family Food Educators share nutrition and physical activity information in their communities.

Since 2001, training has been provided to 336 parents and community/health workers in 28 different locations throughout Tasmania.

The Family Food Patch program is delivered in partnership between the Child Health Association of Tasmania, and Population Health, Department of Health and Human Services.

This initiative is funded by:

  • the Tasmanian Government through the Department of Health and Human Services
  • the Australian and Tasmanian Government, as a joint initiative under the National Partnership Agreement on Preventive Health.

Who are Family Food Educators?

Family Food Educators are volunteer parents and community members of any age with an interest in children’s nutrition and physical activity. Educators come from a variety of different backgrounds, and are often already involved in their community or are interested in sharing their knowledge and experiences with other families. 



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What do Family Food Educators do?

They promote healthy eating and physical activity for children and families in their community.  They can do this in a number of ways:

  • On an informal basis through talking with friends and family;
  • Promoting healthy messages through their own role modelling;
  • By being involved with activities that include other parents in their community.

The program values all of the different ways Family Food Educators spread their message.  What they do depends on their interest, time, availability, and community needs. 




Latest News


The National Partnership Agreement on Preventative Health (NPAPH) that the Family Food Patch program is funded by has been axed in the latest Federal Budget, May 2014. If you would like to petition against these cuts and look at ways in which you can support our program and many others under threat, including the Move Well Eat Well and Tasmanian Scool Canteen Association programs, please contact the Program Team (see details under Contact Us).

Family Food Patch Youtube Channel
The program team are currently developing a series of short, educational and user friendly media clips on the topics we cover in our Family Food Patch Educator training. Currently available are media clips covering physical activity for kids and starting solids parts 1 & 2. Soon to be launched will be our Drinks clips and Getting Kids Involved. These great resources are free for anyone to share with their family, friends, networks and work spaces. Click here to connect to the Family Food Patch Channel.

Nutrition and Physical Activity Toy Boxes
Just a reminder that we have toy boxes full of children's toys, games, music and books for Family Food Educators to borrow for FREE. The toy box items are a great way to share healthy eating and physical activity messages with groups of children at community events, small gatherings or simply in your own home.

The toys are in large wheelie suitcases or chunky plastic boxes with lids and you can borrow the whole set or individual pieces at a time. The toy boxes are located in Hobart, Launceston and Devonport, click on the location to see what is in the box nearest to you we can also post you an item or organise a collection/drop off.

Sweet Free Party Bags
There are all sorts of ways that you can celebrate birthday's, holidays and events without having to resort to sweet treats - our Sweet Free Party Bag tip sheet will give you some great fun ideas on how to!

Breastfeeding DVD
A great new dvd resource has been developed to promote and support breastfeeding for young women by the ACT government. Check out the short film and share these great messages with your networks!

Gardening With Kids Tip Sheet
Following on from the success of our Nude Food Day competition last year and the subsequent Gardening with Kids workshops that were held with Tino Carnevale (from ABC's Gardening Australia), we have collated a tip sheet on Gardening with Kids. It covers a range of topics from sensory garden plants, recycling ideas, top 10 crops for children to grow, and creative activities. 

If you are an individual or an organisation that is interested in participating or bringing the Family Food Patch training to your community, please contact the Program Team (see details under Contact Us).

Please note that the Family Food Patch program has very strong community support within Tasmania, and as such we get many more requests for training than we currently have the capacity to fulfil. The Program Team will be happy to discuss your request for training and advise you of our current commitments and plans.

Our next Family Food Patch Educator training course is being held at Geeveston Child and Family Centre starting from 23rd July, 2014. The course runs for five consecutive weeks on Wednesdays from 9.30am - 2.30pm. To register your interest in attending please contact the Program Team for an Expression of Interest form and an information sheet for full details. An informal Information Session will be held at the centre for interested community members on Friday 13th June from 10am - 11am.






Family Food Patch Program Manager - Emily Rataj
Ph 0409 405 789
Email: familyfoodpatch@iprimus.com.au
Post: Family Food Patch, PO Box 896, Devonport TAS 7310

Family Food Patch Program Officer - Emma Rowell
Ph 0438 926 242
Email: info@familyfoodpatch.org.au



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