Post-print of: Adams JK, Huddy AD, Holden L, Newell S, Miller M & Dietrich UC 2003, 'Tooty Fruity Vegie – a recipe for successful volunteer participation in primary schools', Health Promotion Journal of Australia, vol.14, pp.187-191.
This study describes volunteer participation in a multi-strategic fruit and vegetable promotion in primary schools in Northern NSW. Methods Parents and volunteers at 10 intervention and six control schools, and principals from the intervention schools, were surveyed after a two–year intervention. We investigated the strategies implemented by parent volunteers, why they volunteered and the conditions they needed to be effective and satisfied. Results A quarter to a fifth of intervention school parents volunteered in some capacity, assisting with implementing a wide range of strategies in all schools. They felt their work was highly satisfying and useful. Principals reflected these views and felt that volunteers responded more positively to this project than other school activities. Conclusions Volunteers can be significant contributors to whole-of school nutrition programs if they are adequately resourced, trained and supported and are offered fun hands-on strategies to implement. So What? The participation of parent volunteers is one effective way of ensuring school nutrition programs are both low budget and population-based.