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UW Honors Wyoming Department of Family Services

May 6, 2009

The Wyoming Department of Family Services (DFS) has received the first-ever Friend of Family and Consumer Sciences award from the University of Wyoming's Department of Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS).

"It's truly an honor to receive an award like this from such an important and vital resource for Wyoming families," said Tony Lewis, DFS director, who attended the banquet with Alice Sullivan and Jacque Petroski, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) consultants with DFS, and Sue Bacon, administrator of the early childhood division with DFS.

"The FCS has made an incredible difference for the population we serve. We feel this has been a wonderful partnership for us."

FCS department head Professor Karen Williams echoed the appreciation of the partnership.

"DFS has been a wonderful, supportive partner on so many of our department's projects and grant-funded initiatives," she said. "So often, agencies aren't recognized for their many contributions to children and families in the state and the ways they collaborate to make those good things happen. We were delighted to be able to do so."

She noted Bacon has been a partner of the FCS department for 14 years. "Examples of her leadership and collaboration include Healthy Child Care Wyoming, the Early Childhood Leadership Institute, the state infant-toddler credential and the list goes on and on."

The Cent$ible Nutrition Program (CNP) program within the UW Cooperative Extension Service helps residents eligible for SNAP (formerly called Food Stamps) learn how to eat better for less and stretch their SNAP-benefits buying power. CNP provides educational opportunities for Wyoming families and individuals with limited resources that lead to having access to an affordable, available, adequate, nutritious and safe food supply.

In 2008, more than 1,400 adults participated in a series of CNP nutrition, food safety and menu planning lessons. More than 4,600 adults and 2,500 youths received one time presentations.

Mary Kay Wardlaw, director of CNP, said the partnership with DFS helps low-income Wyoming families improve their lives.

"We enjoy our tremendously supportive and encouraging relationship with DFS, headed by Tony Lewis," Wardlaw said. "We work closely with Alice (Sullivan) and Jacque (Petroski). They not only provide funding for our program, they help us navigate the federal guidelines while allowing us the freedom to deliver an effective educational program."

Petroski complimented the relationship with the College of Agriculture and the CNP program. "Together, we work to help families in Wyoming become more self-sufficient, and, with our collaborative effort, we are able to impact the lives of thousands of people in Wyoming," she said. "Without this great team effort, our programs would not be as successful as they are."


Posted on Wednesday, May 06, 2009

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