Halloween is just around the corner! Houses festooned with cobwebs and doorsteps decorated with pumpkins, the neighborhood streets just waiting to be filled with children going door to door for Trick-or-Treating.
However, this October 31st, be on the lookout for something a little different…
A Different Type of Trick-or-Treat
If you see a household with a teal pumpkin on their doorstep, it means that the traditional offering of candy may be a bit different. In fact, it may be removed altogether!
You see, food allergies can affect how a child enjoys this holiday. There are over 15 million Americans with food allergies, including those at risk for Anaphylaxis. This is a life threatening disease that affects 1 in 13 children in the United States. Halloween can be a difficult time for individuals and families dealing with food allergies. For this reason, many of the traditional treats offered during Halloween aren’t safe for children with allergies.
The Teal Pumpkin Project is a nationwide movement that promotes safety, inclusion and respect for individuals with food allergies. It was created to provide an alternative for children with food allergies. It also offers an opportunity for those who may seek something different than candy.
The project was founded by Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE).
The aim of the project is to ensure that Halloween can be a safe, fun and positive experience for all!
How to Participate
In order to participate, simply paint a pumpkin teal and place it in front of your home. The color teal is used to represent food allergy awareness. Then, offer alternatives to candy as offerings for the Trick-or-Treaters.
These alternatives can include:
- glow sticks,
- pencils and pens,
- whistles and kazoos,
- bouncy balls,
- novelty toys,
- stickers or
These low cost yet fun items can easily be found at party supply or dollar stores.
And if you still want to offer the traditional candy fare, just make these items available in a separate bowl!
FARE is a non-profit organization that lobbies on behalf of Americans with food allergies. Their mission is to improve the quality of life of those with food allergies. They aim to support these individuals by increasing awareness about food allergies, providing them with the respect and advocacy they need to lead productive lives, and encouraging research into new therapies and state of the art diagnosis.
Take the Pledge
If you want to be a part of the movement and provide fun and positive Halloween for all, FARE encourages you to take the Teal Pumpkin Pledge. You can download a free printable sign from FARE to accompany your teal pumpkin.
Join over 100,00 households and take the Teal Pumpkin Pledge by clicking here.
[Photo courtesy of Jen Reeves on Flickr]