Halloween will be here in a few weeks, and for most kids, that means one thing – candy. Our neighborhood is great for trick-or-treating and our kids typically end up with a pretty huge haul (which Brian and I may or may not “help” with eating).
For kids with food allergies, though, Halloween can be stressful (also – did you know 1 in 13 kids has a food allergy?). It involves either sorting through candy carefully to remove offending pieces, or avoiding trick-or-treating entirely.
Our nephew is allergic to dairy, and our good friends’ daughter is allergic to gluten. Thankfully, neither of these are life-threatening, but our 7 year old son has a boy in his class with a severe peanut allergy. Their teacher talks about their classroom being a peanut-free zone, but last week someone ate peanut butter near him during lunch – he ended up having to go to the hospital. All three of these kids will have to be careful with what they consume on Halloween – which is why the Teal Pumpkin Project is so great.
FARE (Food Allergy Research & Education) began this initiative to help make sure all children will come home on Halloween night with something they can enjoy. It just takes one simple act: offering non-food treats, such as glow sticks & bracelets, stickers, fun pencils, necklaces, or small toys as an alternative to candy.
If you’re participating, the idea is to paint a pumpkin teal as a signal to trick-or-treaters. Our local grocery store has a big display with teal paint ready for purchase:
I’ve created a free printable sign you can put up on your front door to let people know you’ve got non-food treats available – it’s an easy way to make Halloween a great night for all kids!
Just click here or the image below to start your free download. FARE has some other options for free signs, too!
Have a happy – and safe – Halloween, everyone!