Monday, June 04, 2012

SickKids Foundation President Defends Junk Food Fundraising

So last Monday I blogged about how SickKids Foundation was hypocritically normalizing eating out and encouraging the consumption of junk food in the name of raising money to combat childhood obesity .

I sent my post over to SickKids Foundation president Ted Garrard and he was kind enough to send me a response as well as give me permission to post it.

Basically Mr. Garrard's position is that because those same institutions that are inviting people to purchase such things as onion rings, pizzas, cookies, desserts, Chinese take out have "low fat" items too, that it's alright.

To me that's the food industry apologists' version of the, "but I was just following orders" argument.

Have a read, and if you're interested in sending your thoughts to Mr. Garrard, you can do so by clicking here, or leave a comment on the blog as I'm hopeful the Foundation will be reading,
Dear Dr. Freedhoff,

Thank you for your e-mail and for taking an interest in our first-ever Healthy & Happy campaign. We take all comments and feedback seriously.

In your recent blog about SickKids, you allude to several cause marketing relationships linked to our current campaign. These are valued corporate partners of SickKids Foundation who have come on board to help us raise critical funds for The Hospital for Sick Children.

These corporate sponsors offer a wide range of food and beverage choices, including low-fat options for the health conscious consumer. These are also family-friendly retailers and restaurants and we believe their customers align with our target demographic for this campaign. We believe that important components of a healthy and happy lifestyle include making healthy food choices, being active, being mindful of portion sizes and all things in moderation.

That said, we will take feedback like yours into consideration as we move forward with planning next year’s Healthy & Happy campaign.

The Healthy & Happy effort is based on one simple premise – every child deserves to be healthy and happy. Ultimately we are trying to create a platform to discuss the seriousness of child health issues while reflecting the spirit of happiness which we believe is so important for all children. It is meant to be a positive and feel good experience for anyone who is touched by our campaign. If you visit our site at you will see the positive influence this campaign is having for families who rely on SickKids every day.

Please know that we appreciate and value your perspective, and I want to thank you again for your feedback.