Internship Eat to Thrive & Real Kids Real Food

 

Application Deadline: Monday, January 25, 2021

Position: Part-time and Unpaid

Description

Today, it is estimated that every 1 in 5 American children aged 3-19 are struggling with obesity, often a form of malnutrition (CDC, 2017). The pervasive consequences of this epidemic include increased risk for the child to develop other chronic diseases, such as asthma, bone and joint problems, sleep apnea, risk factors for heart disease, and diabetes (CDC, 2017). The mission of Eat to Thrive & Real Kids Real Food is to prevent obesity, chronic disease, and malnutrition through the education and advocacy of healthy living.

Our mission is manifested in two unique programs: Eat to Thrive and Real Kids Real Food. Since 2008, Eat to Thrive continues to be a renowned 10 week course for adults seeking to improve their health. The lessons in Eat to Thrive have ranged from plant-based nutrition and food preparation to sprouting, exercise, and mind-body connection. Real Kids Real Food (RKRF) began as a health program for inner-city, underserved, low-income children and their families in public housing and public schools. During the Pandemic, the program is now all online facilitated by 8 college interns for 3 age groups (3-6; 7-12; 13-19). The program provides age-appropriate lessons on nutrition, exercise, food preparation, and mindfulness. The teen program incorporates environmental justice and its relation to nutrition. 

Where: Virtual through Zoom

When: Beginning Monday, January 11, 2021. Immediately. Part-time, flexible hours.

College credit or volunteer.

Why: To fulfill the mission of preventing obesity, chronic disease and malnutrition,

especially in children, through education and advocacy of healthy living.

Start & End dates: WINTER 2021   January 11 – April 11

Hours: 10 hrs/ week, a total of 120 hours:

Planning lessons & teaching RKRF, ETT classes, admin. assistance 

Field Supervisor’s Name:  Betsy Bragg 

    If interested, email cover letter and resume to betsy.bragg@icloud.com

    Recent Interns

    Spandana Shankara

    Brandeis University Class of 2023

    Economics & Applied Mathematics Major

    Real Kids Real Food/ Eat to Thrive Intern

    Real Kids Real Food Camp Counselor Ages 12 – 18 In the summer of 2020

    I interned at Real Kids Real Food and Eat to Thrive with Betsy. For Real Kids Real Food, I worked on the first virtual summer camp where I gained valuable experience in creating lesson plans tailored to 12 – 18-year-olds about a healthy lifestyle. For Eat to Thrive, I worked primarily on the administrative side, learning about what it takes to run a business and how to efficiently run an online class. Working with a specific age group for the Real Kids Real Food summer camp helped me improve on my communication skills as I learned how to convey information to a specific group of people in a creative manner. I learned how to effectively communicate with people through video calls as well as on the phone and this greatly improved my ability to communicate with people virtually. In addition, creating lesson plans for this camp allowed me to be creative. It was a lot of fun working with the kids and they really enjoyed the lessons geared towards helping them live a healthy lifestyle with food presentations, mediation, and exercise. What helped the kids learn this information was showing them a practical way of improving their lifestyles.

    The administrative side of Eat to Thrive was particularly interesting to me as that is what I hope to do more of in the future. With Constant Contact, I learned about how to market classes properly to a particular audience. I also prepared agendas and talked to guest speakers for the Eat to Thrive class which allowed me to improve on my communication and organizational skills. Working with Besty was an amazing experience. Betsy is a wonderful mentor who is a passionate, kind, and genuine person. She truly cares about the participants in her classes as well as all of her interns. I am very grateful for this internship experience as it allowed me to develop skills that are transferable to my future endeavors and projects.

    Asanya Wawlagala

    Brandeis University Class of 2023
    Health, Science, Society and Policy (HSSP) & Biology Major
    Intern Real Kids Real Food Age 3-6 In the summer of 2020

     

    I interned with Betsy as part of the Eat to Thrive/Real Kids Real Food virtual summer program. I worked with the 3-6 group, which can be a tricky group to work with; however, I learned that the key to success for online camps is to engage the children busy with different activities throughout the hour. The program also taught me how to make personal lifestyle choices to implement more healthy practices and how to effectively teach that to these young children.

    Every week we would make lesson plans and this taught me how to organize my thoughts into one page summaries of what was going to happen in the class and it also helped to communicate our goals to the parents. My favorite part of the internship was teaching the children. The group we had was a lively bunch, and keeping them attentive for an hour was something that took time and patience. When working with young children, you have to be flexible and be able to adapt on the fly.

    We taught the children a range of educational topics, such as about the life cycles of plants which they implemented by planting veggies, the water cycle, fruits and vegetables and much more. We had to make sure the lessons were understandable (age appropriate) and enjoyable for young children. My Co-Counselor and I worked hard on refining the lesson plan to make that happen. Overall, the children had an enjoyable time in the class and they would always tell about the fun they had and how they learned so much. There were five components to our lesson plan: the implementation of the healthy living objective, exercise, meditation, review of old material, and recipe demonstration. The children prepared the recipe alongside or after the video with their parents. This made them feel like a real chef and incorporated them and their parents more into the process of learning about healthy lifestyles.

    Another skill I learned more about was marketing and promotion. I would help to create letters and newsletter through Constant Contact software. This allowed me to be creative and it also allowed me to see the promotional and marketing side of an organization. I also made a lot of phone calls to local daycares and preschools in order to enroll more children to join the class. In order to run a successful class, you have to be able to market yourself and the product successfully and Betsy Bragg helped to show us that and how to use the Constant Contact software to help make sure the promotional and marketing end was a success.

    Betsy Bragg was a phenomenal director and I learned a lot from her. She was dedicated to helping others and showed so much kindness and patience when working with me to complete a task. She was a great person to work with and helped me gain self confidence and teach me more about healthy living that I will take with me even after I leave this position. I have learned so much in my time at this internship from professional skills to lifestyle improvement and I am very thankful for it all.

     

    Maunika Reddy

    Boston University
    Class of 2021 Health Science Major
    Real Kids Real Food/ Eat to Thrive Intern
    Real Kids Real Food Camp Counselor Ages 3 – 6

    In the summer of 2020, I interned at Real Kids Real Food and Eat to Thrive with Betsy Bragg. For Real Kids Real Food, I worked on the first virtual summer camp where I was one of the counselors for the 3-6 age group. For Eat to Thrive, I mainly did administrative work to further help Eat to Thrive run smoothly.

    Real Kids Real Food summer camp was such a valuable experience. I was able to work on my teamwork and communication skills. Since this camp was all online, I also improved my communication skills through Zoom and over the phone. Furthermore, for my group, I helped create lesson plans that were tailored for the three to six-year-olds. The boundless energy of these kids always made everything more fun. We played games, did exercises, led meditations, and presented food demonstrations while the kids made the recipes at home. Participating in Eat to Thrive classes aided us in teaching the children how to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

    By being involved in the administrative side of Eat to Thrive, I worked one on one with Betsy and learned what it takes to run a business. I helped with Constant Contact newsletter, which is where I learned how to market the classes to a specific audience. During the classes, I would record any questions that were not answered and make sure that Betsy would email the students the answers. I was also the technical assistant for some of the virtual classes, in which I was involved in admitting the students and guest speakers into the class, presenting any videos or slideshows, and uploading the recordings into Youtube. I also led breakout room discussions. Eat to Thrive was educational and helped me improve my communication, organizational, and teamwork skills.

    This was a wonderful experience. Betsy is a great mentor who is passionate about what she is doing. She not only cares so much about her students but for the interns as well. Her dedication and devotion made this a memorable experience. This internship is something that I will always value, and will impact what I do in the future.

    Past Interns

    Jessica Lauv

    Jessica Lauv

    Intern

    Boston University, Class of 2019

    Health Sciences Major

    The private business, Eat to Thrive, has truly been the perfect platform for my interpersonal, public speaking, and administrative skills as well as nutrition knowledge to flourish. Director Betsy Bragg has taught me the behind-the-scenes difficulties of running a business in terms of social media advocacy and intense preparation for the classes. Notable examples include creating and planning events, and sharing them by writing newsletters through Constant Contact, and posting on Facebook, Meetup, and Linkedin. Rather than just posting about our classes, we supplement these pages with current events, info about the hunger crisis in America, urban farming camps to combat food deserts in Bronx, NY. I loved working on this aspect because it gave dimension to the concepts of health inequities that I learned about in Boston University.

    In addition to administrative work, interns are also present during classes in the 10 week course alongside other students. I gave educational food presentations that have undoubtedly honed my public speaking ability and improved my knowledge of nutritional value of foods. Betsy and the students created a very welcoming environment, open to new ideas, cultures and backgrounds of all ages, perfect for learning and bouncing ideas off each other. In every class, I noticed that in learning to prepare healthy food there was a strong sense of teamwork that was complemented by a contagious positive energy that I loved.

    That said, this environment could not feasible without Betsy Bragg, who has been such an amazing mentor. Betsy is always so caring, knowledgeable, driven and genuine with anyone she meets. Working with Betsy at Eat to Thrive, has inspired me to be equally as passionate in whatever I endeavor to do in the future. Overall, I am grateful to this internship opportunity and to Betsy who has helped me grow my soft skills and also grow as a person.

    Katy Ruderman

    Intern

    Cambridge College 2019
    Health and Wellness Major

    I interned with Betsy as part of the Eat to Thrive program and the Real Kids Real Food program in the summer of 2019. I learned so much about how to eat a healthy vegan diet. It is easy to just cut out the meat, dairy, and processed foods, but to learn what you should add to your diet is not something you hear much about.

    In Eat to Thrive I enjoyed all of the guest speakers who covered topics ranging from detox, to meditation, to qigong, and the lymphatic system. The class creates a great community of like-minded people who are looking to make a health change together. Each week people demonstrate raw vegan recipes to show the wide range of cuisines available to people who are just starting this lifestyle change. All of the recipes come from Betsy’s numerous books or from students’ research. Everything is shared with the class, to ensure that you have the tools necessary to make the switch to this diet.

    I assisted with Real Kids Real Food and got to use my new knowledge to teach the next generation how to live a healthy life. With the kids we talked about how to incorporate more vegetables and fruits into your diet. Just like the adults, the kids love getting to prepare food in class each week and sample their creations. It was such much fun to share new ingredients and recipes with the kids and see how much they enjoyed them. The Real Kids Real Food curriculum incorporates movement into each class. With kids it is so key to show them not only how to eat healthy, but also how to support their diet with exercise.

    I know that I am eating more raw vegan meals and thinking about what to add to my diet to improve it at each meal. I know that the kids in Real Kids Real Food will be doing that as well.

    Elisabeth Silletto

    Intern
    Assistant to the Director
    Cornell University Class of 2021

    Food Science major
    Nutrition minor

    As an Assistant to the Executive Director of Optimum Health Solution (OHS), I gained valuable firsthand experience working with a grassroots non-profit. Working with Betsy, the director, I learned many important lessons about managing a nonprofit.

    Through witnessing and taking part in Betsy’s calls with contractors in a variety of areas of expertise, I gained insight into administrative tasks. It was fascinating to hear the different ideas and opinions regarding the making of an online store and the upcoming expo.

    One of the major tasks I took part in, helping Betsy organize the upcoming Healthy Living Expo, a fundraiser for OHS’s program, Real Kids Real Food greatly expanded my event planning experience. Helping to compose fundraising letters to send to potential exhibitors and sponsors taught me valuable information about marketing and fundraising, as well as providing skills working with Constant Contact. I witnessed the logistical challenges present in any event while crafting a floor plan for exhibitor tables, and later modifying it to fit updated measurements. I also learned to work with Brown Paper Tickets, and WordPress. I know all these skills will be helpful going forward in future jobs.

    One task I especially enjoyed was making a lesson plan for a summer camp for 8-14 year olds, teaching the importance of good nutrition. It was great to be able to spread OHS’s wonderful mission with young children, teaching them the importance food has on our lives. I would recommend this internship to anyone interested in working with nonprofits who is passionate about health and nutrition.

     

    Yongmin Kwon

    Intern

    Assistant to the Director/Assistant to Eat to Thrive Educator

    Boston University Class of 2018

    Health Science major
    Public Health minor

    Drawing upon courses I have taken at Boston University Sargent College, I was constantly informed and taught about the importance of achieving health equity and health promotion. Because I had a strong belief that these two strategies have the greatest impact on overall health of communities, I wanted to work for an organization that had similar values or ethics as mine. Ultimately, my beliefs and values influenced me to apply for Optimum Health Solution. I chose Optimum Health Solution as my practicum site because the goal of the organization was focused in preventing obesity, chronic disease, and malnutrition through the education and advocacy of healthy living.

    During my experience at Optimum Health Solution, I assisted our executive director Betsy Bragg in preparing programs of Eat to Thrive and Real Kids Real Food. As I was involved in these tasks, I felt rewarded because purposes of these programs were to promote health and also support those families in underserved areas. In these programs, I assisted in posting recipes, weekly lesson plans and photos, and also assisting in other social media webwork. On each day, I was involved in completing tasks such as Constant contact, Quickbooks, Brown Paper Tickets, and WordPress. I am fortunate enough to learn all these skills during my time at OHS because these are practical skills that can be used in my future career also.

    Overall, my experience at OHS was one of the most notable work experiences I will ever have in my life. Working at OHS not only helped me to learn about the current situation American health is in, but it also prepared me for an actual experience in field of public health and non-profits. I highly recommend this experience to anyone who is interested in promoting healthy living, improving business skills, and also learning about health equity.

    Lauren Cohen

    Brandeis University Class of 2018

    • Health: Science, Society, and Policy; Psychology Major
    • Hispanic Studies Minor

    Intern

    Assistant to the Director/Assistant to Eat to Thrive Educator

    As an Assistant to the Director Intern, Lauren gained invaluable professional skills that will undoubtedly transfer to her future career interest. She plans to work in non-profits after graduation and working at Optimum Health Solution exposed her to many facets of this field of work.

    Designing the weekly newsletters in Constant Contact helped her realize the importance of strict deadlines, how to be an efficient worker, and developed creative thinking skills on how best to capture an audience. She fine-tuned her organization skills through preparations for the Eat to Thrive Course each week and acquired grant making skills through work on the Real Kids Real Food Program. By assisting with inventory tracking, she is now proficient in QuickBooks software.

    Betsy not only provided her with worthwhile tasks everyday, but showed an immense amount of compassion and dedication towards making her intern experience the best it could be. Through working with Betsy, she has gained the personal confidence to be assertive when problems arise- as observed through calls to customer service lines when they encountered issues. Learning the ins-and-outs of the running of a nonprofit, especially one lead by the amazingly passionate Betsy, has solidified her interest in this sector.

    Clare Stephens

    Intern

    Assistant to the Director/Assistant to Eat to Thrive Educator
    Colby College Class of 2018
    Neuropsychology Major
    Environmental Studies Minor

    Working as Assistant to the Executive Director of Optimum Health Solution was an invaluable experience and would be for anyone considering a career in public health, policy, and/ or non-profits.

    This was my first experience working in the management side of a non-profit. As Optimum Health Solution is grassroots, I had the opportunity of working side-by-side with the Executive Director herself. Betsy always valued and appreciated my input. Completing tasks ranging from event marketing to budget making, I learned many of the ins-and-outs of non-profits. One of my favorite tasks with OHS was co-authoring frequent newsletters to thousands of readers. I had the opportunity to incorporate my own relevant interests into these newsletters such as climate change and Alzheimer’s Disease.

    Perhaps the most important task I assisted with working with OHS was grant-writing, a crucial skill for anyone hoping to work with nonprofits. Additionally, I can now include a multitude of newfound programs that I am comfortable working within my resume. These include Constant Contact, Quickbooks, Brown Paper Tickets, and WordPress. I also got to use my photography skills to capture images of several recipes we prepared. They were very tasty!

    My experience with OHS was eye-opening to the health crisis we are facing in America. I am proud to say I have made a difference by contributing to this organization and specifically its program Real Kids Real Food. I spent several weeks helping Betsy further develop this program after five successful years and am excited to hear how it goes this Fall!

    I would enthusiastically recommend this internship to anyone with a passion for wellbeing, public health, and non-profits.

     Samantha Pearsall

    Intern

    Assistant to the Director/Assistant to Eat to Thrive Educator

    Brandeis University Class of 2018
    Health: Science, Society, and Policy; Psychology Major
    French and Francophone Studies Minor

    My experience working at Optimum Health Solution was definitely a positive one. When I applied for the internship, I had no idea of not only the new information I would receive about healthy living, but I also improved my organizational skills, gained experience working for a non-profit, and formed lasting friendships with the members of the Eat to Thrive course and the director, Betsy Bragg.

    Working at OHS taught me a lot about what it takes to manage a non-profit. I helped create the monthly newsletter, prepared presentations, and completed other various office tasks. While doing this, I was able to better appreciate the OHS mission of preventing obesity, chronic disease, and malnutrition in the population, particularly in children, and was able to take part in meaningful projects directed towards helping change the surrounding community for the better.

    I also assisted in the 10-week “Eat to Thrive” class taught by the director of OHS, Betsy. This course provided me with information on healthy lifestyle habits, from nutrition to proper breathing, and I will definitely implement these tips throughout the rest of my life. With the class, I was able to participate in the hands-on food preparation as well, which I thoroughly enjoyed. Additionally, meeting others who have the same passion for healthy living was wonderful and inspiring, and I am so thankful to have been a part of the beautiful community that was this “Eat to Thrive” course.

    Ultimately, I would highly recommend this experience to anyone interested in not only improving their business skills but also for anyone with a passion for healthy living and wellness. Betsy is a wonderful educator and person, and I have learned so much from her during my time with OHS. It was a truly beneficial volunteer experience.

     

    INTERN FEEDBACK

    Every week was exciting for me; I thoroughly enjoyed reading Betsy’s Eat to Thrive book, learning new concepts, tasting new recipes, and listening to amazing guest speakers that were educational, insightful and fascinating.I plan to teach my own class as a health educator in the future and I feel as though I have the education and skills to do this now. I really enjoyed meeting new people that I feel so close to, and I feel as though doors have opened up for me because of this amazing opportunity. I am committed to nourishing my body, mind and spirit and to help others do the same.

     

    Emily McNamara

    EMILY MCNAMARA – INTERN

    Provided me with new information about healthy lifestyle choices

    Practice speaking in front of crowd.

    Gave me practice with organization skills through lesson planning.

    Learned healthy raw vegan alternatives.

    Practice with meal preparation.

    Gave me hands- on experience working with children.

    AILISH DENNIGAN – INTERN

    Increased my organizational and communication skills, and health knowledge.

    Allowed me to work directly with the kids with a hands-on approach and witness first hand the changes that the program is making in their lives. The kids’ energy is contagious and I love seeing them get excited about the recipes and activities that we do each week.

    Exposed me to the behind-the-scenes workings of a non-profit, and the power of collaboration across programs.

    Altered my personal approach to healthy living and reinforced my interest in health education.

    SARAH STEINBERG- INTERN

    Strengthened my administrative organizational skills, focusing on tasks such as email correspondence, newsletter editing, and maintaining social networks.

    Introduced me to educational health standards in regards to writing lesson plans for Real Kids Real Food

    Introduced me to healthier lifestyle

    Inspired me to want to work with inner city children and families spreading awareness about healthy options in everyday life.

    Thank you for the wonderful experience that taught me so much about myself, and not only how I can live and feel healthier, but also how to empower others

    ARON THIIM- REAL KIDS REAL FOOD INTERN:

    Reinforced my conviction that our lifestyle choices are paramount to leading a healthy way of life.

    Enhanced my public speaking abilities and confidence, while learning how to effectively deliver information to a multi aged group.

    Fostered better organizational skills and the ability to take initiative with many tasks at once.

    Improved social perceptiveness through learning how to work with children of different abilities and backgrounds.

    Adapted to the challenges faced and transcended difficulties by learning to accept criticisms and advice, thus bettering my active listening skills.

    KATIE SULLIVAN- TRAINOR
    EAT TO THRIVE INTERN:

    Achieved my personal weight-loss goals, and fostered an overall healthy relationship with food

    Provided opportunities for networking and engaging in the raw food community

    Developed meaningful and lasting relationships with fellow participants

    Improved social perceptiveness through learning how to work with children of different abilities and backgrounds.

    Adapted to the challenges faced and transcended difficulties by learning to accept criticisms and advice, thus bettering my active listening skills.

    Tayler-LaHaise

    TAYLER LAHAISE – REAL KIDS REAL FOOD INTERN

    Taught me an invaluable lesson about what it means to live a fit and healthy lifestyle by teaching the children eye-opening facts about sugars and fats, as well as diabetes and obesity.

    Helped me work on time management, organization, leadership, and communication skills.
     
    Gave me the opportunity to gain a hands-on experience with working with young children in an inner-city environment.
     
    Taught me about planning, organizing, and managing lesson plans and putting them into effect.

    Brian-AxelrodBRIAN AXELROD- REAL KIDS REAL FOOD INTERN:

    Empowered to be a leader

    Challenged my organizational skills

    Allowed me to develop my lesson planning abilities

    Inspired me to create my own juicing business with a kickstarter raising $7,000 to refurbish at trike for selling wheatgrass and sprouts and also have a robust group of peers to act as teachers for support

    Became a lead teacher of Real Kids Real Food

    Became an Optimum Health Solution volunteer staff member

    Inspired to raise money to take a water ionizer to a South Indian raw food community called Satchitananda near the Bay of Bengal where I spent my Lesley College Junior Year Abroad ( major in Global Studies and Holistic Health)