Partnership for a Healthier America and Michelle Obama Announce Detroit as Part of 'Pass the Love' Campaign to Deliver 264,000 Healthy Meals to Families Facing Food Insecurity

June 22, 2021

5,500 Detroit families to receive healthy meals kits as campaign distributes 1 million meals inspired by Netflix’s ‘Waffles + Mochi’ and raises awareness of food equity around the country

DETROIT, MI – The Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA), in collaboration with PHA Honorary Chair Michelle Obama and Higher Ground Productions, is bringing the ‘Pass the Love w/ Waffles + Mochi’ campaign to Detroit. Starting next month, 5,500 Detroit families will receive ‘Pass the Love’ meal kits, with recipes and ingredients inspired by the new Netflix series, Waffles + Mochi. Over the course of four weeks, PHA and local partner Focus: HOPE will distribute 264,000 healthy meals to food-insecure Detroit families as the campaign works to meet its goal of distributing 1 million meals across the country.

Michigan residents have faced high rates of food insecurity since long before the pandemic, when approximately 1.3 million people in the state faced insufficient access to nutritious food. COVID-19 has greatly exacerbated this problem, and now as many as 1.9 million individuals are estimated to be food insecure, according to a Fall 2020 report from the Michigan Governor’s Food Security Council.

“Thrilled to announce that Detroit will be our latest partner city for the Pass the Love campaign with @PHAnews! We’ll be distributing healthy meal kits there soon, and with your help, we can reach even more families in need. I hope you’ll donate at,” said Former First Lady and PHA Honorary Chair Michelle Obama via Twitter, announcing Detroit as the next ‘Pass the Love’ partner city.

‘Pass the Love’ distributions began earlier this summer in Atlanta and Cleveland, with additional cities to be announced. ‘Pass the Love’ meal kit distributions take place over four weeks and are structured to build the capacity of local nonprofits in those cities. Socially conscious food service organization Genuine Foods has sourced and assembled the meal kits, including high-quality ingredients and recipes inspired by Waffles + Mochi, enabling families to create meals that are fun, fast, and affordable to replicate.

Sample Pass the Love Meal Kit Recipes are Available HERE

Images of Pass the Love Meal Kits are Available HERE

“PHA is honored to be able to serve families through the ‘Pass the Love’ campaign in Detroit, as we seek to do our part to transform the food landscape in pursuit of health equity,” said Nancy E. Roman, President and CEO, Partnership for a Healthier America. “Pass the Love is focused on creating access and exposure to affordable meal making for families, laying the groundwork for long-term shifts in attitudes and diet that benefit health.”

“We are so excited to be working with Partnership for a Healthier America on ‘Pass the Love w/ Waffles + Mochi,’ ” said Portia Roberson, CEO, Focus: HOPE. “I know this initiative will help many families experience the joy of cooking together, and I’m grateful that Focus: HOPE is able to play a role in distributing the meal kits to families throughout Metro Detroit.”

‘Pass the Love w/ Waffles + Mochi’ leverages the show, its characters, and Mrs. Obama to meaningfully shift our food culture toward more affordable, fun, at-home meals for families of every income level. Through the meal kit distribution program, PHA is targeting communities with the highest levels of childhood poverty, as identified by the Annie E. Casey Foundation.


About Partnership for a Healthier America

The Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA), founded in partnership with Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! campaign in 2010, is the premier national nonprofit working to transform the food landscape in pursuit of health equity. PHA seeks partnerships that have the greatest potential to reduce health disparities. We do this using evidence-based approaches that drive systemic access to better food. In a decade of work, we have partnered with more than 300 corporations, convenience store chains, and distributors, hospitals, early childhood education centers, and SNAP-Ed implementing agencies, among others, in pursuit of our vision that all children grow up healthy and free from obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic conditions.