The Teal Pumpkin Project raises awareness of food allergies and promotes inclusion of all trick-or-treaters throughout the Halloween season. (Christine van Reeuwyk/Oak Bay News)

Teal Pumpkins pop up in Greater Victoria

Oak Bay mom leads charge in offering non-food treats this Halloween

At six-and-a-half months old, Sullivan Johnston isn’t quite ready to trick-or-treat. But by the time the Oak Bay boy heads out next year, mom Sarah Johnston hopes they can plan a route, safe for him to gather treats.

She and dad Tim Johnston are big fans of Halloween, so it was an early consideration when their baby boy was diagnosed with Food Protein-Induced Enterocolitis Syndrome (FPIES) at just over four months old. FPIES is a food allergy affecting the gastrointestinal tract with symptoms such as profound vomiting, diarrhea, and dehydration.

“I went into research mode because I’m a nurse,” Sarah said. She quickly found the Teal Pumpkin Project, which started in the U.S. three years ago and has grown globally since. “It truly resonated with me. It was really easy to get behind.”

A teal pumpkin on the porch indicates a household offering alternatives for kids with food allergies – non-food treats such as glow sticks or small toys.

“It’s also for other children where candy’s not an option,” she said.

With a pair of partnerships with Galey Farms and Save on Foods, she hopes to spread that awareness.

She promotes the project at Galey Farms Oct. 14 and 15, and Oct. 21 and 22 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

She’ll be at the Fort and Foul Bay Save on Foods on Oct. 28 and 29 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. And as long as supplies last, she can get those interested, into the project. Available by-donation, Sarah crafted ready-made bags with glow sticks, tattoos, toys and other non-food items.

“You can walk away with a starter kit,” she said. “All you have to do is go home and print out a sign and you’re participating in the Teal Pumpkin Project.”

Online resources are also key, Sarah says. Learn more at the Facebook page (facebook.com/tealpumkinprojectvictoriabc/) or visit the Food Allergy Research & Education site at foodallergy.org where she found a litany of free resources.

Funds raised during the promotion events will go to FARE.

Just Posted

Island Health, service providers meeting to talk about used needles in Victoria

Recent public needle-prick incidents prompt call to reduce number of needles found

Traffic logistics for Lansdowne Road closure

Public Works talks alternative routes for 2.5 month closure of major transportation artery

Boat capsizes in Caddy Bay

Two members of the Royal Victoria Yacht Club Race Team spent part… Continue reading

Oak Bay showcases non-profits and more with inaugural volunteer fair

The Oak Bay Volunteer fair runs Jan. 20 from 1:30 to 4 p.m. at the Monterey Recreation Centre

Dozens rally outside Premier’s office for sick Sooke boy

Six-year-old Landen Lanthier needs $19,000 a month to treat rare form of arthritis

Oak Bay showcases non-profits and more with inaugural volunteer fair

The Oak Bay Volunteer fair runs Jan. 20 from 1:30 to 4 p.m. at the Monterey Recreation Centre

Body discovered in burnt out car near Trail

Police report a body was found in the burnt out trunk of a 1999 Honda Civic

VIDEO: B.C. Lions sign defensive back T.J. Lee to contract for upcoming season

The four-year veteran had a team-high four interceptions and 49 tackles last season with B.C.

How an immigrant to Canada helped Donald Trump prove his mental health

Test that cleared Trump was developed by doctor associated with McGill and Sherbrooke universities

Premier touches on multiple topics ahead of Asia trade trip

Housing and childcare are expected to be the focus of the BC NDP’s first budget in February.

Wanted by Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers for the week of Jan. 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

UPDATE: Friends mourn boy, 15, killed in Vancouver shooting

John Horgan: ‘No stone is to be left unturned until we find the perpetrator of this heinous crime’

Vernon to host largest Special Olympics B.C. Winter Games in 2019

Games to be held Feb. 21-23, with more than 800 athletes expected to take part

Ex-BC Liberal staffer focused on ‘favourable’ ethnic communities in scandal: lawyer

Former communications director Brian Bonney’s sentencing hearing for breach of trust is underway

Most Read