Elementary students in Chicago help themselves to the salad bar in their school's cafeteria.

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The Surprising Story Behind One School’s Healthy Lunch Program, The Best Way to Reach Your Reps and More

Take a break from the regular news cycle and check out these NationSwell must-reads, which uncover solutions that are moving America forward.


Revenge of the Lunch Lady, The Huffington Post Highline
In a country where cheap mass-produced food is king and pizza counts as a vegetable, healthy lunches for kids can be hard to come by. But a recent revamp of school fare in Huntington, W.V., previously designated as the nation’s unhealthiest city, provides a hopeful model. There, an enterprising employee managed to implement a healthy lunch program, starring locally grown produce, while maintaining the district’s minuscule $1.50-per-meal budget.

Getting a Busy Signal When You Call Congress? Here’s How to Get Through, The Christian Science Monitor
Since President Trump’s inauguration last month, there’s been a surge in citizens reaching out to Congress, but not all forms of communication are equally effective. If you really want your voice heard, say experts, try meeting with your representative in person, writing a personal letter and focusing on policy rather than cabinet picks.

The Compost King of New York, The New York Times
New York City alone generates 1 million tons of organic waste per year, but a new plant on Long Island will process this waste into both fertilizer and clean energy, generating significant returns. This new large-scale industrial waste processing is both more environmentally friendly and more profitable than traditional composting, and could revolutionize American energy.

MORE: This Urban School District Is Promising Free Meals For Every Child

Hallie Steiner is a writer and social media manager from Los Angeles. She has written for Buzzworthy and trends consultancy The Innovation Group. Contact her at [email protected]