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Cooking Matters empowers families at risk of hunger with the skills, knowledge and confidence to make healthy and affordable meals. With the help of volunteer culinary and nutrition experts, course participants learn how to select nutritious and low-cost ingredients and prepare them in ways that provide the best nourishment possible to their families. Cooking Matters is nationally sponsored by the ConAgra Foods Foundation and Walmart.
Share Our Strength provides seven specialized curricula that cover nutrition and healthy eating, food preparation, budgeting and shopping. Cooking Matters’ culinary and nutrition volunteers teach these high-quality, cooking-based courses at a variety of community-based agencies--including Head Start centers, housing centers and after-school programs--with neighborhood locations that make it easy for families to attend.
- Cooking Matters for Adults teaches low-income adults (primarily adults with children) how to prepare and shop sensibly for healthy meals on a limited budget. Cooking Matters for Adults are available in both English and Spanish.
- Cooking Matters for Kids engages kids ages 8 to 12 in learning about healthy eating and provides simple nutritious recipes that children can prepare themselves.
- Cooking Matters for Families teaches school-age children (ages 6 to 12) and their parents about healthy eating as a family and the importance of working together to plan and prepare healthy meals on a budget.
- Cooking Matters for Teens teaches teens how to make healthy food choices, meals and snacks for themselves, their families and friends.
- Cooking Matters for Child Care Professionals teaches child care professionals about healthy meal preparation and creating a healthy food environment for the kids in their care.
Each Cooking Matters Signature Courses teach kids and parents important lessons about self-sufficiency in the kitchen. Participants practice fundamental lessons including knife skills, reading ingredient labels, cutting up a whole chicken, and making a healthy meal for a family of four on a $10 budget. Adults and teens take home a bag of groceries after each class so they can practice the recipes taught that day.