Little Chefs are back at Community Care

By Mike Puffer

No one has to be told of the importance of healthy eating, but the skills needed to properly prepare and follow a nutritious dietary plan seem to have diminished over the past few generations. All too often, we see individuals and families choosing convenience over quality food when it comes to meal preparation.

This summer, the Community Care Health & Care Network aims to help some local youth gain cooking skills that will benefit them for life – and we just may help to produce the next Jamie Oliver or Emeril Lagasse (but hopefully not any hot-tempered Gordon Ramsays!).

Little Chefs are back at Community Care
Columnist Mike Puffer

Each summer, Community Care’s Community Health Centre presents the “Little Chefs of Kawartha Lakes” cooking program. In partnership with the HKPR Health Unit, there will be six different free one-day cooking skills workshops for youth ages 6 to 12. Registration is limited, so parents interested in signing their children up for one or more workshop should contact Registered Dietitian Lauren Gogol soon (705-879-4100, option 1).

Experts say the best way to teach young people about eating right is to actually get them into the kitchen to prepare healthy meals together. That’s exactly what the Little Chefs program will do. Cooking is a valuable life skill that teaches children about nutrition and food safety, as well as building math, science, literacy and fine motor skills. Lauren hopes to encourage participants’ interest in healthy foods by teaching them how to cook safely with age-appropriate kitchen activities.

At each workshop, Little Chefs will get hands-on cooking experience, enjoy a homemade healthy lunch and snacks, and take home a culinary creation to share. They will also each receive a Little Chefs apron to keep.

The Little Chef program has been generously supported by the Lindsay Optimist Club. The service club’s mandate to bring out the best in our youth by supporting applicable local projects and programs is a great fit with Little Chefs.

Upcoming workshops:

August 2 – at the Lindsay Salvation Army.

August 9 – Bethany United Church.

August 14 – St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, Bolsover.

August 16 – Woodville Community Presbyterian Church.

August 23 –Dunsford United Church.

August 28 – Little Britain United Church.

Each session will be 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Renowned author and advocate Michael Polan has stated that one of the most important life skills that can be taught to young people is how to cook in order to improve health and overall well-being. The Little Chefs program is doing its part to achieve such a goal.

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