Today was our last day for Our HEALing Kitchen (OHK) collaboration between the St. Joseph Community Health Foundation, Parkview, Ivy Tech and Unity Performing Arts Foundation. To say that the class was a success would be an understatement. The participants absolutely enjoyed the networking, education, and fellowship during our 4-week sessions.
Our class sessions began on August 6th and ran through August 29th, holding two sessions per week for a total of eight required sessions. Keyonia Cox, served as our facilitator for 7 of the 8 sessions and is Certified as a Nutrition Educator and SafeServ professional. The meal options that we preselected were a huge hit with our participants: 1) Superfood Salad; 2) Vegetarian Chili; 3) Spaghetti Squash with Tomato Pesto; 4) Mexican corn on cob and BBQ mushroom rollups; 5) Chocolate dipped strawberries and bananas; 6) Flourless banana muffins; 7) Peach & Strawberry smoothie; 8) Celebration Day – Migas; Tomato & Red Onion salad; Broccoli, cauliflower and corn soup.
Our sessions were marketed specifically to seniors and our participants’ ages ranged from 61 – 71 years. We even had one male in the class whom had worked in the restaurant business for 25 years and he enjoyed the experience, in spite of his expertise. What I found to be meaningful is, although we were working with seasoned participants, they were extremely engaged and were still learning how to make plant-based foods taste good! The recipes contained in the HEALing Kitchen workbook/cookbook are incredible and our participants already noted how they have used other recipes and are finding they aren’t incorporating meat as much into their diets because they are satisfied with so many of the meatless recipes!
We had an incredible time with each and every one of those involved and created some wonderful friendships along the journey. Chef Amanda was an incredible support for us and we appreciate her patience and accommodations, greatly!
We value the collaboration between all parties involved and look forward to continued ventures to HEAL our community!