By Renee Larr
Every parent seeks to keep their child safe, especially during Halloween. With food allergies on the rise, the fall holiday can be dangerous. The Teal Pumpkin Project hopes to shed light on food allergy awareness while still making trick or treating fun for those affected. Fishers resident Dianne Collis discovered TPP a few years ago after signing up for information.
“I’m just a parent with a child who has food allergies,” Collis said. “I was emailed information about TPP a few years ago. Every year it’s been growing in popularity. Last year we decided to paint one of our pumpkins teal and participate. I was pleasantly surprised to find I had to go to three different stores because the teal colored paint was out in the first two stores.”
TPP asks families to put a teal colored pumpkin on their front porch during Halloween so families know other Halloween goodies besides candy are available at that specific home.
“It’s one of those things that it can be either or it doesn’t have to be both. You can still offer the traditional candy treats, but they just ask that they’re in a separate bowl from the non-food treats you offer,” Collis said. “The non-food treats they’re talking about are just really little non-expensive things — bubbles, stickers, bouncy balls. You can also get on to that food allergy site, and it has free printable signs you can put next to the teal pumpkin to explain and raise awareness.”
The teal project allows children with food allergies to still have a fun Halloween experience without risking their health.
“As a parent you would always want to keep things normal for your child and not have their difference brought to their attention day in and day out,” Collis said.
For more, visit foodallergy.org.