HSHS St. Clare Memorial Hospital, Oconto Falls, 2022 Community Benefits

Nurse’s Nook Pilots Summer Meal Program

Fresh produce for families through Nurse's Nook
Summer 2022 was a busy and exciting season at the Nurse’s Nook within HSHS St. Clare Memorial Hospital. Nurse’s Nook provides aid such as non-perishable food, clothes and hygiene needs to Oconto County families free-of-charge, as needs are identified. 

The Nurse’s Nook weekend food program runs only through the school year so a summer meal program was implemented to provide nutritious meals for families to bridge the gap. Through a partnership with Sarah Schindel, FoodWIse nutrition educator from Oconto County UW-Extension, healthy and kid-friendly menus were created, which included fresh vegetables, eggs and berries from local farmers and the Oconto County Farmers Market. The program also worked with Pat's Market in Gillett to supply families with fresh meat and groceries. In exchange for participating, parents were asked to invite their children to prepare the meals together.

Many parents sent messages sharing the fun they were having with their kids. Naturally, there were many “no, thank you” bites to begin but over time, these turned into foods the whole family enjoyed. 

Prevea Health offered use of their parking lot for meal pick-ups, providing a central location for families to meet.  Families also learned about the Oconto County Farmers Market and were excited to learn that vendors accepted SNAP cards to purchase local and fresh produce. 

One family shared, “Our bag of fresh green beans never made it home! Our kids ate the bag while shopping and as a snack on the way home.”