Activities > Food Allergy Consultant

Food Allergy Consultant

Kristin Nelson-Patel is a busy working mom to two children who have multiple life-threatening food allergies to common staple ingredients. 

When Raikha and Will want to participate in food-involved events at school, Kristin has discovered that fairly simple information and coordination efforts vastly increase her feeling of comfort and safety, enabling her children to participate, connect with their community, and enjoy these experiences of childhood.  

Kristin is excited to help the Chenery PTO provide an atmosphere of care and inclusion for families in Belmont dealing with food allergies.

The role of Food Allergy Coordinator is based on the simple premise that families dealing with LTA need access to information that will allow them to feel safe.  When a child has a LTA, the calendar of school events gives rise to many questions.  Families need someone to turn to who understands their concerns, can help with their specific questions--in advance of and during the event--and maximize every child’s ability to participate and be safe. 

As middle school, children become increasingly independent, playing a larger role in their own risk management, the first layer of allergy defense--the parents’ ability to accurately inform their child in advance about what to expect and how to make safe choices--becomes even more important.  The Chenery PTO Food Allergy Coordinator will be a hub for sourcing and organizing information about the foods offered at a school event and preparation methods that will be used.  She will make information available on the PTO website in advance and will respond to questions and concerns of individual families.  Bring her your specific needs and concerns and she will assist in managing risk.   Being able to plan ahead is key.

Additionally, The Food Allergy Coordinator will consult with the PTO, Student Council and others in the school community to maximize safety when planning food-related events. She will assist in food selections, encourage simple measures such as collecting recipes and photos of ingredient lists to share with parents, and inform about safe serving methods to avoid cross-contamination. 

Unfortunately, growing numbers of children are suffering from a vast array of diverse food allergies.  By creating this role, The Chenery PTO is striving to include and support children with LTA in all events.  This additional support in our Chenery community will help all children to manage risk and safely participate to the fullest extent possible. 

Please contact Kristin at facparentcontact@gmail.com.