| Washington Elks Therapy Program for Children

Mealtimes can be stressful for many families, but for Grant’s family they were particularly difficult. There were tears and tantrums and general frustration. At 3 years old, Grant was only willing to eat crunchy carbohydrates, such as crackers. No vegetables or fruit, and no protein except for peanut butter. This was all due to an oral sensitivity.

Grant had been receiving therapy through the Developmental Center, but he did not qualify for continued service through the school district’s 3-5 year old program. It was at this point that Elks Therapy entered the picture.

The focus for Grant’s therapy was to introduce new foods in a “Grant friendly” manner. The goal was for Grant to be willing to try new foods and broaden his diet, leading to better overall nutrition.

Therapy consisted of the construction of many “veggiemobiles”, playing game-show style games such as “Will it Crunch?”, and his mom’s favorite, food bowling.

Today at 4½, Grant is willing to try new foods most of the time. He will even try the sample items at Costco! He will stall if he thinks he won’t like it, but he will eventually eat it. He certainly still has his favorite foods, but this list has grown. His challenge foods at this point are mixed texture casserole type dishes and sauces. Ketchup, however, has been designated its own food group on the food pyramid, and one he likes a great deal. Grant is getting protein along with fruits and vegetables in his diet. Sec

Washington State Elks Association