FAQs

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HappyHealthy Community Center sign on a wire fence with basketball court and children playing in background.

Happy Healthy FAQs

Q. What is HappyHealthy?

A. HappyHealthy is a program created to help everyone in Mississippi live a happier, healthier life.

We focus on food, because food is a big factor in health. And good food makes us happy!

We believe that everyone can enjoy the foods they love, in a healthier way. Making healthier choices about food is one of the easiest ways to live a healthier life.

Make the choices that will keep you healthy, and being healthy will make you happy!

HappyHealthy is brought to you by the Mississippi State University Extension Service. Funding is provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture through the Mississippi Department of Human Services.

Q. What is MyPlate?

A. MyPlate is an easy-to-follow guide to help adults and children make healthy choices for balanced meals and better health.

It was created by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, whose scientists worked with nutrition researchers and educators at universities around the U.S.

MyPlate recommends that you:

  • Fill half your plate with vegetables and fruits.
  • Make at least half the grains you eat whole grains, like brown rice or oatmeal.
  • Serve fat-free or low-fat milk or water instead of sugary drinks like soft drinks, juice, or Kool-Aid.
  • When buying pre-packaged foods, choose the ones that are low in sodium.
  • Don’t serve large or over-sized portions, especially to children.

You can find out more at https://www.choosemyplate.gov/ and https://kidshealth.org/

Q. How can I be more active?

A. Here are some quick and easy ways to add physical activity to your routine.

  • Move every day.
    • Walk around your block or up and down your street.
    • Use the stairs whenever you can.
    • Work in your home or your yard. Housecleaning and gardening are good exercise
    • Make it fun.
      • Figure out which activity you like the best and just do it!
      • Walk or work out with a buddy.
      • Try new things.
        • Dance.
        • Try a class at a gym, YMCA, or community center.

What if . . .

  • I don’t have time.
    • Work in fitness anytime.
    • If you sit for long periods of time, stand up for 3 to 5 minutes every hour.
    • Walk or step in place with you are on the phone or watching television.
    • I feel embarrassed.
      • Work out inside your home.
      • Walk up and down the hall or the stairs.
      • It costs too much.
        • Do free activities like walking or running.
        • Look for free fitness classes. Sometimes community centers or churches offer them for free.
        • It’s boring.
          • Keep trying new things until you find an activity you really like.
          • Listen to music, watch television, or talk on the phone while you walk or workout.

Q. What is SNAP-Ed?

A. SNAP-Ed is a federally funded nutrition-education program for adults and kids who don’t have a lot of money to spend.

Our mission is to promote healthy environments, nutrition, and physically active lifestyles to bring about changes in families, communities, and policies in Mississippi.

SNAP-Ed provides education focused on healthy food choices, physical activity, food security, food safety, and managing a food budget.

The SNAP-Ed program is delivered in Mississippi by the Mississippi State University Extension Service. Funding is provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture through the Mississippi Department of Human Services.

Q. Are the SNAP-Ed lessons really free?

A. Yes. All programs and lessons are free of charge.

Q. What are the programs you offer?

A. SNAP-Ed offers five free programs for children, adults, and families, as well as schools, after-school programs, and summer programs. They are:

  • Cooking Matters®
  • Cooking Matters® for Kids
  • Cooking Matters® at the Store
  • Show Me Nutrition
  • MyPlate for MyFamily
  • Eat Smart, Live Strong for Older Adults

Q. What will I learn in your programs?

A. In our hands-on programs, you will learn how to:

  • Plan and make healthy, quick, meals and snacks.
  • Keep food safe to eat.
  • Make traditional Southern meals in healthier ways.
  • Save money and stretch your food dollars.
  • Increase physical activity for yourself and your family.

Q. Who leads these activities?

A. All SNAP-Ed activities are led by trained and caring nutrition educators and Extension agents who live in your community. They care about you and your success!

Q. Do I have to know how to cook before I come to your classes?

A. No cooking experience is needed. Our lessons and hands-on activities will help you gain skills in the kitchen.

Q. What do I get if I come to your classes?

A. When you come to the SNAP-Ed classes, you will get great information you can use. In some classes, you will also:

  • Participate in live cooking demonstrations.
  • Taste the food you make.
  • Take home easy, low-cost recipes.
  • Learn basic cooking and kitchen safety skills.
  • Learn how to manage your food budget to get more for your money.

Q. Are your lessons like high school or college classes?

A. No. Our lessons are fun, hands-on, and easy-to-understand. You will learn practical information you can use right away.

Q. How can I join SNAP-Ed in my community?

A. We provide lessons and activities in communities throughout Mississippi at locations like these:

  • MSU Extension offices.
  • WIC Centers.
  • Senior Centers and Community Centers.
  • Libraries.
  • Schools and after-school programs.

For more information about classes in your community, contact the Mississippi State University Extension office in your county. You can find their contact information here: http://extension.msstate.edu/county-offices

Q. Do I need to be getting SNAP benefits to attend SNAP-Ed programs?

A. No. You do not have to be getting SNAP benefits to participate in SNAP-Ed.

If you participate in programs like these, you are probably eligible for SNAP-Ed:

  • WIC.
    Head Start.
  • TANF.
  • Food banks or food pantries.
  • Shelters.

Q. Will attending the SNAP-Ed lessons or programs affect my SNAP benefits or other benefits, like WIC?

No. SNAP-Ed is an additional resource for you and will not affect your other benefits.

Q. Where can I find out about getting SNAP benefits?

A. For more information on SNAP, please visit the SNAP web site for Mississippi:

http://www.mdhs.state.ms.us/field-operations/programs-dfo/supplemental-nutrition-assistance-program-(snap)/snap-for-the-client/

Q. How can I find a food pantry or food bank near me?

A. These web sites can help you find emergency food organizations, food pantries, food banks, and/or soup kitchens near you:

Q. How can I find a farmers market near me?

A. You can find a farmers market at the Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce web site: https://www.mdac.ms.gov/bureaus-departments/farmers-market/markets-mississippi/

Q. How can I find an MSU Extension office near me?

You can find the MSU Extension office in your county here: http://extension.msstate.edu/county-offices

Q. How can my agency or organization partner with SNAP-Ed?

A. Contact Sylvia Byrd, Project Director, at 662-326-1340 or shb5@msstate.edu.

 

Nondiscrimination Statement


In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, religious creed, disability, age, political beliefs, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA.

Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g. Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.), should contact the Agency (State or local) where they applied for benefits. Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.

To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD-3027) found online at: http://www.ascr.usda.gov/complaint_filing_cust.html, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by:

  1. Mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights 1400 Independence Avenue, SW Washington, D.C. 20250-9410
  2. Fax: (202) 690-7442
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This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

FNS Nondiscrimination Statement