From 1997 to 2008, peanut allergies in children more than tripled in the USA and no-one knows why.  There are many theories, from our environments becoming cleaner with fewer natural infections in childhood, to increased use of medications reducing our immune system, or simply the way peanuts and peanut products are now processed.

However, whatever the cause, the facts remain the same and that is that a peanut allergy is not something that is often outgrown and definitely not something that can be reduced by exposure or consumption.  Here at the Club, just like in our School District, we do not use peanut butter or peanut oil in our food or food preparation.  Currently, due to an increase in soy allergies, we are using sunflower butter for our classic PB&J sandwiches or as a snack with some fresh veggies.

But while we can easily control the meals we serve, it is harder for us to control what parents send as snacks and in packed lunches.  That is why we are asking ALL parents to be vigilant about foods you send your child to Club with and not to pack anything with peanuts or peanut butter in it.  Children are generous and like to share, and unfortunately it isn’t always apparent that there are also peanuts in that M&M cookie.  Accidental consumption of a nut could mean life or death to some of our members and we need everyone’s help to keep the Club a nut free zone.

A few other quick health and safety messages while we have you: please make sure your child has applied sunscreen before they arrive at Club.  On field trips and when outside we will encourage reapplication but a good covering in the morning goes a long way to avoiding sunburn.  Also please send you child to Club in close toed, athletic shoes.  We are running around all day and on the grass and in the dirt.  Flip flops or the latest fashions often don’t provide the support or the protection that the children need.  Help to avoid blisters and pine needle encounters by sending them in practical footwear.

Thanks for your help in make the summer as fun and safe as possible.