My husband has food allergies, and Halloween was always a hard holiday for him as a child. He couldn't eat most of the candy that people would give out. Some of them contained peanuts or peanut butter. Others were "made on equipped that processed peanuts" or "may contain peanuts." Back when we were children, there wasn't as much awareness, and there weren't as many kids with allergies. People are becoming more and more aware of allergies and are starting to do something about it. One of those ideas is the Teal Pumpkin Project.
The mission is simple: offer non-food treats as an alternative this Halloween for those kids who have allergies. Common food allergies include wheat, nuts, food dyes, chocolate, and dairy among others.
Why is this important to speech-language pathologists? Well, a lot of the students/clients that we work with have food allergies or sensitivities. Even if they don't have true allergies, some parents choose to limit the amount of sugar, gluten, food dyes, etc. that these children have. I believe this is one way we can advocate for them!
Here are some ideas for non-food items:
-small bouncy balls
-kazoos or other whistles
The Teal Pumpkin Project asks that you be careful with some non-food items due to other allergies. For example, some play-doh or molding clay could have wheat. Other toys might have latex.
To find out more information, print off flyers, and/or register your house, you can go to The Teal Pumpkin Project's website.
This Halloween, my husband and I will have two separate bowls-one with non-food treats and one with candy. Will you join us?