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POSTED: December 20, 2007 5:02 a.m.
America has a population of more than 300 million people. This country’s population is a melting pot from varied races and cultures.
A common past time of this country’s population is eating. Most people enjoy a good meal, but often, we are eat wrong foods. Subsequently, we live in a country wherein people suffer from a variety of illnesses. Many of these illnesses are preventable and are caused by poor eating habits.
As more and more people experience health problems, the medical care profession is becoming inundated with new patients. In an effort to help people to learn how to eat properly and to eat a balanced meal, the government established various programs.
One such program is the federally funded Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program.
The program has been in existence for more than 30 years. Its primary purpose is to assist families with children learn how to eat healthier meals and snacks, stretch their food dollars and reduce the risk of food borne illness. It offers a variety of nutrition education experiences for the entire family.
The program is conducted through the University of Georgia’s Cooperative Extension Service. Locally, the program is housed at the Liberty County Extension Office in Hinesville.
Alexzine Goosby, the nutrition education trainer for the EFNEP, conducts classes for daycare centers and workers, pre-school, pre-K and other individuals based on income throughout Liberty County. The classes are conducted on-site or at the county extension office.  
Adults enrolled in the program learn a variety of nutritional and educational facts.  They learned how to plan low cost, nutritious meals, prepare quick and healthy meals and snacks, shop for the best food buys, keep foods safe to eat, and eat right and light to control sugar, salt, fat, and calories. Pursuant to completion of classes, participants receive graduation certificates.
On Nov. 7, 11 students who had participated in the Eating Right Basic Course received their graduation certificates. They had completed six to eight one-hour classes that were conducted on-site. These daycare workers and owners work at Alpha Youth University, Sylvia’s Kiddie Land Daycare, Vilma’s Daycare, Learning Forest and Quality Care Learning Center.
According to Vilma Lamboy, owner of Vilma’s Daycare, the classes were beneficial and good.
“I have a food program at the daycare and I really learned a lot. Ms. Goosby refreshed my mind on some things. She is an excellent instructor. It is very important that we read the labels on food items. We need to provide healthy food for the kids,” she said.
Lamboy has worked in daycare for 20 years and has owned her daycare since 1996.
Quality Care Daycare owner D’Ardreatis Jose, recommends the classes, especially to people who are taking care of children.
“The lessons were very good. Some of them were refresher courses. Mrs. Goosby is a very loving, caring person. She makes you feel as if you are a part of the family. The information I received was very helpful,” Jose said.
“The classes taught me how to prepare nutritious meals and read labels on food items. I really liked the classes. I would recommend them for men and women so they could have a healthier lifestyle,” Francine Jackson said.
Jackson is the owner of the Learning Forest Day Care and has been in the daycare business for 14 years.  Since moving to Georgia six months ago, she has operated Forest Day Care.   
Anyone interested in enrolling in these classes should call Goosby at the Liberty County Extension Office at 876-2133.
 

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