East Orange YMCA’s Plans To “CATCHify” The Neighborhood

Let’s Go!

So, our snacking smarter push is a GO and as a means to “visualize” what it means to make healthier choices, we are implementing the aforementioned CATCH curriculum from our partners The Horizon Foundation for New Jersey Healthy U Initiative.  CATCH (Coordinated Approach To Child Health) is an evidence-based, coordinated school health program designed to promote healthy food choices and now we bring that thinking to the masses in an effort to change behaviors.


Using green “GO,” yellow “SLOW,” and red “WHOA” stickers on food choices in vending machines will increase awareness and selection of heathier foods and beverages.

“GO” describes foods that are whole grain, unprocessed fruits and vegetables, lowest in fat, contain no added sugar, and can be eaten daily.  We call these “everyday” foods.

“SLOW” describes foods that are slightly processed and may have some added salt, fat, or sugar.  We call these “sometimes” foods.

“WHOA” describes foods that have the highest level of fat and sugar.  They should be consumed once in a while.  We want everyone to “stop and think” before they consume these foods.

Our original goal was to target a few vending machines in prominent schools and city offices, but we found it best to target one vending company to work on changing behavior and policies for the health of the community.

More to come!

All for you,

East Orange YMCA

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