A Hero for Healthy Schools: Cindy Sardo

June 03, 2011

In April, HSC teamed up with Chicago Public Schools and the Office of Minority Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to present Heroes for Healthy Schools, a series to focus attention on the role everyone can play in ensuring that all children are able to succeed in school and live healthy lives. We invited our readers across the country to nominate individuals they see making a difference for kids’ health at school and in the community. Today we are happy to spotlight one of the many Heroes for Healthy Schools you wrote to tell us about!

Thanksgiving 2010 014 Cindy Sardo and her daughters.

“I am writing to nominate Cindy Sardo as my Hero for Healthy Schools!  I became aware of Cindy and her efforts shortly after she brought her Cooking's Cool program to my son's school.  Will, my 2nd grader and somewhat picky eater, came home one day and informed me that cooking healthy is cool and we need to eat a rainbow of foods each day!  Needless to say, this prompted me to research the program he had attended in an attempt to extend the results within our home.  I was blown away by the efforts of Cindy Sardo and her team.  Not only has she created a whimsical and educational series of books for parents and teachers to use, but she has also launched a program that has been showcased in public, private, catholic, and charter schools which engages children in creating and tasting a healthy dish.  She even incorporates a craft with students that strengthens her message that Cooking is Cool!  But Sardo takes it one step further…  She and her staff often partner with schools they are visiting to bring the healthy dishes made by the students to local soup kitchens.  To me, this is the very definition of a hero – someone who is making a difference and giving back to the community. 

Cindy Sardo is on a mission to empower children in schools across the country to learn that making healthy life choices is cool.  I am grateful my son had the opportunity to participate in her program and introduce me to her work.  I'm proud to say that her Cooking's Cool book collection has a home in my kitchen, and we cherish the nights our family uses them to create and enjoy a healthy meal together. 

I encourage you to visit her website so that you can see for yourself why I feel so strongly about nominating Cindy Sardo as my Hero for Healthy Schools!”

– Jamie Kleman

Thanks to Cindy for empowering students, parents and teachers to make healthy choices! To learn more about Cindy's work, please visit her blog and check out her Cooking's Cool series!

Plus! To read about more individuals who are making a difference for school wellness, check out the Heroes for Healthy Schools section of HSC's blog