University of Maryland Extension

EFNEP Success Stories

EFNEP Makes a Difference for Maryland Families- In Their Own Words


EFNEP participant at risk for chronic disease learns heathy lifestyle through simple behavior change

"The Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP) In Prince George's, Maryland works closely with clientele of Sowing Empowerment & Economic Development, Inc. (SEED), to deliver a series of lessons focused on facilitating healthy lifestyles . A 40 year old woman client of SEED was excited to learn about EFNEP workshops. Her physician recommended that she follow a healthy lifestyle as she was overweight and at risk for diabetes. She has been struggling to find ways of eating healthy and be physically active. She participated in a 12-month EFNEP nutrition series. The EFNEP educator focused her lessons on the importance of eating well-balanced meals using MyPlate as a guide. The participants practiced making their own plates using a variety of food models. They were able to visualize how much they needed to eat and what their plates should look like. Additionally, participants were able to practice different types of physical activity that can be done indoors. After practicing healthy behaviors she learned through EFNEP, the participant’s blood sugar returned to normal levels and she was able to lose weight. Although, EFNEP is not a clinical nutrition program, the simple nutrition guidance of following MyPlate and physical activity tips made significant improvements to her health. She enjoys telling her success story. She continues to advocate for EFNEP and recruits participants from the community and serves as an EFNEP Champion."


EFNEP Making Changes Together

"Tina is a 21 yr. old mother of two children from Cecil County Maryland. She attended weekly EFNEP classes at Rudy Park Community Center earlier this year. While growing up, Tina said she “never ate a vegetable or a fruit unless it came out of a can or a box.” “My family mostly ate stuff that you can heat in the microwave or toaster oven,” she said. “I didn’t really cook. I was even afraid that I might make somebody sick if I didn’t cook things all the way. “ Tina did not volunteer in class at first. She slowly became more confident and comfortable participating in preparing the recipes. “ When I started coming to the class, I was surprised that it was so easy to make stuff from scratch, like stir fry and pizza. " Tina said, “ I tried things that I had not tried before, and I really liked it! Now I try to prepare more fresh foods. I am really proud when my kids eat what I make for them. They are so excited to help me. Now making our food is just as enjoyable as eating it.” Tina and her family are eating more fruits and vegetables now. She said, “It feels so good when my daughter and son ask for broccoli and baby carrots and red peppers and hummus. We pick a new fruit or vegetable almost every time we buy groceries. We still like stuff like pizza but now most of the time we are eating much more healthy."


EFNEP Pregnant Mother Feels More Energetic and Motivated to Eat Healthier After Attending Nutrition Workshop

"Wendy is mother of one and in her second trimester of pregnancy. When she first started attending the EFNEP workshop, she struggled with making healthy meals, had no motivation to be active and had very little energy to do anything. Wendy states that after taking a 6 week Maryland EFNEP nutrition workshop at the Family Services Inc. Early Head Start Program and after learning the benefits of physical activity (and how to do simple, safe physical activity), she has made small changes to her lifestyle to be more active. After learning in class how to incorporate vegetables and whole grains in her Latino traditional diet, her energy levels have improved dramatically. Now she says she is more active, has more energy, and is cooking healthier meals for her growing family."


Last updated 9/1/20

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