Agriculture, Food, Nutrition

Recipe for Success Foundation

  • Houston, TX
  • http://www.recipe4success.org/

Mission Statement

Since 2005, Recipe for Success Foundation has worked to combat childhood obesity by changing the way our children understand, appreciate and eat their food, and by educating and mobilizing the community to provide healthier diets for children. The Foundation strives to create a culture where nutritious food is shared, appreciated, and celebrated. Its signature, hands-on food curriculum has empowered more than 30,000 children with the knowledge and skills they need to lead healthier lives. Its efforts to make healthy food appealing and available to everyone include Houston's Hope Farms and award-winning national programs like Seed-to-Plate Nutrition Education™, farmers marKIDS, Eat It! Food Adventures children's cookbooks and the VegOut! 30-Day Challenge. In a recent survey of the Texas Department of Public Health Region 6 (which includes the Houston area), researchers identified that nearly 50% of 4th graders were overweight or obese, the highest rate of all Public Health Regions in Texas. Research suggests that food attitudes and weight patterns are set for life by age eleven, and that experiential learning presents the most successful model for change.

Main Programs

  1. Seed-to-Plate-Nutrition Education
  2. VegOut! with Recipe for Success
  3. Hope Farms TM & Rolling Green Market
  4. Farmers MarKIDS
  5. Eat It! Food Adventures © Cookbooks
Service Areas

Self-reported

National

The Recipe for Success showcase programming is conducted in Houston, Texas, and since 2010 has been available nationwide through our Seed-to-Plate Nutrition Education™ program guide, web support, podcasts and upcoming television show, as well as foundation operated satellite sites in selected cities including Washington D.C., Missoula, Montana and Westlaco, TX.

ruling year

2006

Principal Officer

Self-reported

Mrs. Gracie Cavnar

Keywords

Self-reported

combat childhood obesity, seed to plate education, nutrition education, kids cooking, kids gardening

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Also Known As

Recipe for Success

EIN

20-3377041

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Nutrition Programs (K40)

Children's and Youth Services (P30)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?

Programs

Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1

Seed-to-Plate-Nutrition Education

The only initiative in the country of it's scope, RFS Seed-to-Plate Nutrition Educationâ„¢ introduces children to the entire cycle of food along with taste and flavor combinations, nutrition awareness and and skills that will serve them for a lifetime, and empowers them to prepare healthy meals and snacks for themselves. With help from professional chefs, gardeners, nutritionists and teachers, the grade-specific S2P curriculum has been codified and extensively tested to produce an extensive S2P Instructor guide with hundreds of class content options designed to relate to harvest schedules, grade-level core learning objectives and a variety of delivery schedules and rotations. A national Affiliate Partner framework has been launched, underpinned by comprehensive instructor training, certification and ongoing support to ensure results consistent with historic achievements. S2P Programs are briskly expanding to every school district Houston and schools from coast to coast.

Category

Food, Agriculture & Nutrition

Population(s) Served

Children Only (5 - 14 years)

Poor/Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent, General

Budget

$10,000.00

Program 2

VegOut! with Recipe for Success

We created the VegOut! Challenge to support efforts of families and individuals to eat healthier by making it an adventure--the same way we entice kids to try healthy foods. Regardless of participant motivation--the fun of competition, the exploration of new food, or a personal focus on healthier eating--the end result is the same: A behavior repeated for 30 days becomes a habit. So, we say "Step up to the plate and pile it with veggies." VegOut! is a year-round advocacy promotion. A dedicated website www.vegoutwithrfs.org is full of resources to source and prepare fresh seasonal veggies and savory fruits. The site is linked to Facebook, Pinterest, You Tube and Twitter (#vegoutwithrfs) social networking sites and encourages comments and sharing among Houstonians electing to VegOut!, whether for the challenge month, any other month, for a day or just occasionally.

Category

Food, Agriculture & Nutrition

Population(s) Served

Adults

Children and Youth (infants - 19 years.)

Budget

Program 3

Hope Farms TM & Rolling Green Market

Hope Farms will transform unused urban property into fully functional, organic farms, designed to generate significant food crops in the midst of Houston's recognized "food deserts" and provide small business incubation and workforce readiness training for urban youth. Built on an affordable housing model, these 1-acre live-work affordable urban farms will be owned by new urban farmers supported by training, mentoring and small business incubation provided by established agricultural, business and academic partners. They will also automatically be members of the Hope Farms Coop, designed to brand, promote and distribute their products throughout the city. Thanks to the Wells Fargo Neighborhood LIFT grant awarded in fall 2014, The Hope Farms project is on its way to a becoming a reality in 2015. The Rolling Green Market (RGM) will deliver significantly reduced-priced, fresh fruits and vegetables directly to families who are now marooned in identified Houston food deserts

Category

Food, Agriculture & Nutrition

Population(s) Served

Adults

Poor/Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent, General

Military/Veterans

Budget

Program 4

Farmers MarKIDS

Recipe for Success Foundation's farmers marKIDS curriculum provides children with knowledge and tools to transform their garden produce into a farm stand to serve the surrounding community while gaining food and financial literacy through experiential learning. Using our free, kid-tested farmers marKIDS toolkit with five lesson plans, facilitators can help children develop financial savvy, entrepreneurial skills and business experience while they make fresh produce easily accessible to their neighbors. Educators, parents and community groups can use the targeted lessons provided to prepare youth to operate their very own small business. The curriculum culminates in a farmers marKIDS stand, when students apply the skills and concepts they’ve learned to sell fresh produce grown in school, community and home gardens. The downloadable toolkit guides children’s efforts in harvesting and pricing produce, promoting, advertising and operating their farmers marKIDS stand anytime.

Category

Food, Agriculture & Nutrition

Population(s) Served

Children and Youth (infants - 19 years.)

Budget

Program 5

Eat It! Food Adventures © Cookbooks

Eat It! Food Adventures with Marco Polo, a kid's cookbook/adventure series released Volume One: Leaving Home on September 10, 2012. It has since won eleven national publishing awards and work has begun on Volume Two. A television show of the same name is in pre-production with Houston PBS in preparation for national syndication. Using an adventure story to attract young readers to the fun of cooking and eating more fruits and veggies, Gracie Cavnar's book follows Ottavio Fornero, a pint-sized member of Marco Polo's famous expedition as he discovers wondrous foods through the rich cultural traditions of people along the old Silk Road. As Ottavio journeys from Venice to the Middle East, cooks and readers as young as seven learn thirty easy-to-follow recipes inspired by the trip.

Category

Food, Agriculture & Nutrition

Population(s) Served

Children Only (5 - 14 years)

Budget

Charting Impact

Self-reported by organization

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

  1. What is the organization aiming to accomplish?
    Recipe for Success aims to prevent childhood obesity and encourage long term health by altering the way our children understand, appreciate and eat their food, and by educating and mobilizing the community to provide healthier diets for children.

    In Houston, our goal is to expand our signature Seed-to-PlateNutrition Education™ to every elementary school in the 13-county region, and to empower Houston parents and caregivers with the tools they need to provide healthier diets for their children. We conduct robust community education campaigns, publish books and videos, and collaborate to foster urban agriculture and solve food access solutions with projects like the VegOut! Challenge, the Eat It! Food Adventures children's book series and television show, Hope Farms urban agriculture and Rolling Green Market.

    Now that we have scaled our Seed-to-Plate Nutrition Education™ program delivery and support, our broader goal is to ensure that every community in the country is aware of it and has easy affordable access to it.

    Our vision is that Recipe
    for
    Success
    will
    be
    widely
    respected
    for
    establishing
    a
    national
    model
    that
    promotes
    healthy
    eating
    as
    the
    norm
    and
    creates
    a
    culture
    where
    nutritious
    food
    is
    shared,
    appreciated,
    and
    celebrated.
  2. What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?
    Nutrition Education
    We make healthy food fun with our signature Seed-to-Plate Nutrition Education™ curriculum for students developed with help from professional chefs, gardeners, nutritionists and teachers. The largest program of its kind, RFS has reached over 30,000 children with an integrated schedule of classes in the garden and kitchen. We have documented: significant improvements in nutrition knowledge, increases in consumption of fruits and vegetables, and a greater willingness to try new fruits and vegetables. In 2010, RFS was asked by the current administration to bring our successful programs to national scale prompting the development of Affiliate Partnerships which launched in 2012. S2P Programs are briskly expanding to every school district in the Houston area, and to schools from coast to coast who have become Recipe for Success Affiliate Partners.

    Community Call to Action
    The VegOut! Challenge supports efforts for families and individuals to eat healthier by making it an adventure, the same way we entice kids to try healthy foods. VegOut! is a year-round advocacy promotion supported by a dedicated website that culminates every March with a 30 Ways in 30 Days Challenge to eat thirty different vegetables within the month. The Challenge launched in March 2013 when thousands of kids, adults, employee groups and families accepted the challenge to eat more veggies, which meant that National Nutrition Month reached entire new levels of healthy eating awareness in Houston and beyond.

    Urban Agriculture and Food Justice
    Hope Farms will transform unused urban property into fully functional, organic farms, designed to generate significant food crops in the midst of Houston's recognized "food deserts" and provide small business incubation and workforce readiness training for urban youth. These plots will be owned by new urban farmers who are supported by training, mentoring and small business incubation provided by established agricultural, business and academic partners.

    The Rolling Green Market is designed to deliver significantly reduced-priced, fresh fruits and vegetables directly to families who are now marooned in identified food deserts, or who are otherwise considered to be suffering from nutritional insecurity.

    Multi-media
    Recipe for Success is determined to fight marketing with marketing in order to promote healthy eating attitudes and normalize healthy eating attitudes and habits. We are developing products in print, online, mobile and broadcast formats. We established S2P Press to publish a variety of books that celebrate and empower healthy choices. Our first, Eat it! Food Adventures with Marco Polo Volume One: Leaving Home, by Gracie Cavnar was released in 2012 to rave reviews and went on to win eleven prestigious publishing awards.

    FarmersMarKIDS
    A free downloadable curriculum designed to to teach children financial literacy skills and transform their garden produce into a business.
  3. What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?
    Our organization benefits from an active board of directors, a community advisory board, chefs advisory board, science advisory board and teacher advisory board along with hundreds of volunteers. Our budget has grown from $250,000 in 2005 to $1,000,000 in 2013/14 supported by individual and corporate gifts, grants and earned income. Our program reach has multiplied exponentially with the newly available Affiliate Partnerships which bring our nutrition education delivery to national scale.
  4. How will they know if they are making progress?
    Because researchers, NIH and the USDA all recommend that a powerful tactic to combat obesity is to increase consumption of fresh produce and to teach young children the importance of eating fresh whole food, that is what we focus our efforts on rather than things like unreliable BMI measurements and such. RFS programs have documented improved knowledge, increases in daily intake of fresh fruits and vegetables, improvements in attitudes towards fruits and vegetables, and increases in willingness to try new fruits and vegetables, through the use of a self-report survey that includes items from a vigorously validated and reliable SPAN (Surveillance of Physical Activity and Nutrition) Survey, the USDA Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program in Wisconsin School Survey, and unique RFS items. Surveys are implemented at the beginning and end of each school year.

    We see an average 30% increase in the consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables after just one school year of participation. Furthermore, students modified behavior and attitudes have impacted families' activities and food choices, affecting a broad cross-section of the communities served. Parents report that their kids are now cooking at home, turning away from foods they have learned are unhealthy, and they display a solid awareness of what healthy eating is all about. Children are surprising themselves by trying, and even liking, vegetables that they would never touch before. Teachers are reporting improved behavior and attention spans in class. One fourth-grader recently admitted, “We ate [broccoli] last week in our class when we made Stir Fried Tofu and vegetables. That was my first time, I think, to eat tofu and I liked it!" By helping children adopt healthy eating habits at a young age, RFS strives to prevent the onset of childhood obesity and its co-morbidities.
  5. What have and haven't they accomplished so far?
    We began programming in five geographically and ethnically diverse Houston ISD Elementary Schools in the fall of 2006, where we tested our theories, fine-tuned our delivery, developed our Seed-to-Plate Nutrition Education™ curriculum and measured our results, which were impressive. After eight years, we have taught over 30,000 children about making healthy food choices and the skills they need to support those decisions for life.

    We developed an extensive train the trainer S2P Instructor certification and online curriculum support site for our Affiliate Partners, which offers all 320 of our lesson plans, suggested formats and schedules, expert advice, forums webinars and podcasts to ensure that our programs are delivered with integrity and return the same impressive results we experience first hand..

    We have grown to serve over thirty school in Texas either directly or through Affiliate Partnerships and in the summer of 2013, launched our first Affiliate Partnership outside of Texas in Washington DC. We now have adapted our program in several Texas middle schools as an After School Program in 2014.

    Our first children's book , Eat It! Food Adventures with Marco Polo has won eleven publishing awards and additional books are underway.

    In summer 2014, the Hope Farms program was awarded the Wells Fargo NeighborhoodLIFT grant and is expected to launch in spring 2016. Partnership with the University of Houston and Rice University's schools of architecture have rendered a Design Charrette of possibilities. With major support from Wells Fargo's Neighborhood LIFT program, United Healthcare and others, preparations are moving swiftly forward with on-the ground efforts expected to materialize in spring 2016.

    A brand new program, Farmers MarKIDS, launched in Fall 2014, is designed to provide children with the knowledge and tools to transform their garden produce into a farm stand to serve the surrounding community while gaining food and financial literacy through experiential learning. The free, kid-tested toolkit with five lesson plans guides children's efforts in harvesting and pricing produce, promoting, advertising and operating their Farmers MarKIDS stand, and it can be downloaded on the Recipe for Success website.
Service Areas

Self-reported

National

The Recipe for Success showcase programming is conducted in Houston, Texas, and since 2010 has been available nationwide through our Seed-to-Plate Nutrition Education™ program guide, web support, podcasts and upcoming television show, as well as foundation operated satellite sites in selected cities including Washington D.C., Missoula, Montana and Westlaco, TX.

Social Media

External Reviews

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Financials

Financial information is an important part of gauging the short- and long-term health of the organization.

RECIPE FOR SUCCESS FOUNDATION
Fiscal year: Jul 01-Jun 30
Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant.

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  • Forms 990 for 2015, 2015 and 2014
  • Board Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Recipe for Success Foundation

Leadership

NEED MORE INFO ON THIS NONPROFIT?

Free: Gain immediate access to the following:
  • Address, phone and website
  • Forms 990 for 2015, 2015 and 2014
  • Board Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
Need the ability to download nonprofit data and more advanced search options? Consider a Premium or Pro Search subscription.

Principal Officer

Mrs. Gracie Cavnar

STATEMENT FROM THE Principal Officer

"Recipe for Success Foundation is in year 10 on the ground in over 30 Houston elementary schools, and growth is in the air. Time spent planting and stirring with over 30,000 kids has cooked up a comprehensive Seed-to-Plate Nutrition Education™ program that is adaptable to any school's capabilities. Every element is infused with our mantra that Healthy Food is Fun. And we are making a difference, with parents and teachers reporting that children coming out of our program eat 30% more fresh fruits and vegetables and demonstrate an awareness of good nutrition as well as a willingness to try new foods. We are active on many other fronts as well. Our first cookbook, "Eat It! Food Adventures" has accrued 11 awards since its release in 2012. In its third year, our VegOut! 30 Ways in 30 Days Challenge participants ate over 20,000 pounds of produce and had teams registered in 32 states during the month of March 2015 to encourage each other to consume more veggies. Farmers MarKIDS, a new opportunity for kids to develop financial management skills by selling school-grown fresh produce to their community, launched in October around Food Day."

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Mrs. Grace Cavnar

Recipe for Success

BOARD LEADERSHIP PRACTICES

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices. Self-reported by organization

Yes

BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?

Yes

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?

Yes

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?

Yes

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?

Yes

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?