Program to help people learn to prepare healthy, affordable meals now taking applications

Local News

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – The St. Joseph Community Health Foundation, in partnership with Parkview Health, announced that it is now taking applications for the “Our HEALing Kitchen” program.

The “Our HEALing Kitchen” is a “Train-the-Trainer” program to help people, especially those who are low-income or vulnerable, learn to prepare healthy and affordable meals.

“We found that by training someone who’s in the organization, they really help them navigate and pick out what’s natural for the group,” said Meg Distler, executive director of the St. Joseph Community Health Foundation.

Using “Our HEALing Kitchen” curriculum, developed by Parkview Health dietitians, organizations host a series of 4 to 8 cooking and nutrition classes for anywhere from eight to 12 students. Organizations designate a program facilitator who receives training and coaching, as well as the materials needed to teach a successful series of classes.

“’Our HEALing Kitchen’ helps address some of the challenges low-income residents face,” said Distler. “The program pairs nutrition and diet information with cooking lessons so participants can learn simple strategies for incorporating more nutritious and affordable foods, such as fresh fruits and vegetables, into their diets.”

The foundation said grants are available to help cover the costs of food, necessary cooking utensils and equipment and a final class celebration and incentives. Grants ranging from $500 to $1,500 are available for churches, nonprofits and other organizations that serve vulnerable or low-income youth or adults.

Applications will be accepted now until June 1 and will be considered on a rolling basis, the foundation said. Applications can be submitted online through the grants portal by clicking on the “grants” menu item at www.sjchf.org.

More information on the program can be found online at www.sjchf.org.

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