Halloween is nearly upon us! This fun and spooky holiday is one of the most entertaining nights for kids each year: creative costumes, running around outside after dark with friends, and…trick-or-treating for candy!!! I have so many childhood memories of Halloween excitement, so I couldn’t help but feel a twinge of sadness when we discovered my two daughters had a dairy allergy a few years back. I didn’t want them to miss out on all of the fun or to feel left out while going door-to-door with their friends. Luckily, there are still some dairy-free candy options, but the majority of Halloween treats tend to be chocolate. And dairy isn’t the only allergy out there – nuts, gluten and soy allergies also affect thousands of kids around you.
What is The Teal Pumpkin Project?
Thankfully, awareness for this issue has gained traction and popularity over the past few years! Have you ever heard of the Teal Pumpkin Project? It’s an amazing initiative that focuses on the inclusion of children with special diets who trick-or-treat.
The concept is simple and everyone is encouraged to participate:
- Collect non-food treat options
- Place a teal pumpkin on your porch to indicate to people that you have non-food treats available
- Add your address to the Teal Pumpkin Project Map
We found our teal pumpkin and non-food treats in the dollar section of local stores. Some great ideas for treats are stickers, temporary tattoos, pencils, bookmarks, necklaces, glow sticks/bracelets/wands, bouncy balls, notepads, stencils, bubbles, noisemakers, or playing cards. Many families choose to give out non-food treats AND traditional Halloween candy, they just have two separate treat bowls.
I can’t tell you how happy I am that awareness is being raised for children with food allergies! Even if my girls were not allergic to dairy I would still encourage participation in this wonderful project. We are constantly striving to teach our daughters about inclusion and the importance of making everyone feel special and cared about. The Teal Pumpkin Project is an easy way that families can do just that within their local communities everywhere!
Save it for later!