Supporting schools to provide healthy food choices for their students
At the Irish Heart Foundation, we are working towards creating a healthier food environment in schools with our Schools’ Catering Award. This award recognises and rewards post-primary schools and caterers that promote and offer healthy food choices.
Why take part in the Happy Hearts at School Catering Award?
By taking part in this award we will support you to achieve a nationwide school catering standard. The process will also encourage:
A whole school approach.
Link with the curriculum and Wellbeing framework.
Health promotion activities.
It will also help create a healthier and more positive school environment.
Improved student concentration, performance, and eating habits.
Healthy food options become easy and appealing.
Provide students with the foundations of a healthier lifestyle.
We will send your school an application form to complete and follow up with a phone call to chat through the programme.
Your school prepares a team to coordinate the programme
An Irish Heart Foundation dietitian will visit your school and complete an independent assessment of its individual needs with the caterer. This includes recommendations on menu choice and best catering practices.
A final visit by the dietitian will take place 8-12 weeks later to review the changes made.
When all the criteria are met, your school and caterer will receive the Happy Hearts at School Catering Award.
The Award lasts for two years, but the benefits of reaching the standard are seen immediately and these benefits can last a lifetime for your students & staff.
Who can apply for the Happy Hearts at School Catering Award?
The awards are open to all post-primary schools with on-site catering.
For more information, please contact the Schools team via email or call us on 01 6685001.
What teachers say:
“The new menu shows that eating healthy doesn’t mean the food has to be boring as the award shows that our school is serving nutritious dishes and snacks that are full of flavour, which will hopefully encourage healthier eating habits outside of their school day too.”
What caterers say:
“The programme has given us an opportunity as caterers to celebrate the food choice and quality we offer. The award offers the school staff, parents, students and the wider community reassurance that we are caterers that provide only the best food for our students.”