Building Healthy Communities

Project Title

Universal School Lunch

Grant Amount


Priority Area

Building Healthy Communities

Date Awarded

October 28, 2016






By making meals free for all students, Universal School Lunch is a program that improves children’s health and education outcomes. It delinks school food from family income and removes the barriers to lunch participation, such as the stigma and bullying associated with free or reduced-price lunch.

In 2014, NYHealth awarded Community Food Advocates (CFA) a grant to work toward the systemwide implementation of Universal School Lunch throughout all New York City public schools. To further support this project, NYHealth awarded Global Strategy Group (GSG) a grant in 2016 to help advance the goals of CFA’s campaign.

Under this grant, GSG worked with NYHealth and CFA to identify and understand relevant key stakeholders; ensure that the campaign’s messages reach the right people at the right time; and build broad and strong support for Universal School Lunch. Specifically, GSG developed key campaign messages for coalition members and City leaders to share on social media and prepare news pitches for targeted news outlets. In addition, GSG worked with relevant public figures and coalition members to develop an action plan and advise them on maximizing their activities.