With Project CHEF kids discover the joy of making delicious, healthy food
Imagine a group of Grade 4 students super excited and working together to make guacamole, their own tortilla chips, minestrone soup and a tofu stir fry. These are only some of the dishes that students at Strathcona Elementary learn to make thanks to Project CHEF (Cook Healthy Edible Food).
The program, delivered across the Vancouver School Board, is not only aimed at teaching students in Grades 4 and 5 to cook – it also teaches them about nutrition, balanced meals and where food comes from. For inner city kids, access to healthy food can be limited so the CLICK-supported program is especially valuable at a school like Strathcona.
After the chef-teacher demonstrates how to make a recipe (and also teaches the students skills such as how to hold a knife to chop effectively) the students, in groups of 4-5, get busy cooking, supervised by the
chef-teacher, chef assistants, their teacher and parent volunteers.
Started by chef and former teacher Barb Finley, Project CHEF is based on cooperative learning strategies. “It requires the students to work as a team. As the week in the program progresses, the students become more independent and start organizing themselves – with no arguing and a sense of fairness,” says Strathcona teacher Eileen De Forge.
Each student does a journal, “Food for Thought”, to record what they’ve learned. They are also given the recipes (with the nutritional breakdown) to take home and many students are inspired to make the recipes for their families.
In the end, one of the most powerful lessons for students is the joy and satisfaction of cooking
together and sitting down to share a delicious meal with friends. “They love it,” Eileen says.
Working hard night and day to make a living doesn’t stop Sara Bynoe from giving back
Sara Bynoe faces the same challenges many young people, often dubbed Millennials, have in Vancouver. To live in a city this expensive, she works multiple jobs as an actor, comic, writer and producer to pay the bills.
Since 2000 she has produced and hosted an event called “Teen Angst Night”. It’s a highly original comedy show that sees individuals get up on stage to read their most embarrassing, cringe-worthy diary entries, letters, poetry and more from their tortured teen years.
But Sara is remarkable for more than her artistic talents. Despite the challenge of making a living in our city, she is determined to give back to her community – so she donates some of the tickets sales from “Teen Angst Night” to CLICK.
CLICK and its mission to support children living in poverty in Vancouver fit with Sara’s commitment to give back to the local community.
“The fact that one in five children in Vancouver lives in poverty is huge for me,” she says. For Sara, who saw her mother and grandmother work to make their communities better, giving back is just the way she wants to live her life. “I am by no means a wealthy person but supporting each other is the right thing to do.”
Jesse Costucci-Phillips honoured with Mayor’s Achievement Award
Jesse Costucci-Phillips epitomizes how far a child growing up in poverty and tremendously difficult circumstances can go with support.
Jesse is a 2017 recipient of The Mayor’s Achievement Award, recognizing those who improve the quality of life for the citizens of Vancouver.
A former foster child, Jesse confronted her hurdles head on and turned her life around entirely. She is a motivational speaker, outdoor enthusiast and marathon runner. She is currently
enrolled in the Native Indian Teacher Education Program at UBC, determined to make a difference for the next generation.
Help us keep the momentum going…for the kidsI have lived in Vancouver for 32 years, and like most residents of this city I am very grateful for all the wonderful things our city has to offer.
But for some time there has been growing evidence that this city has become a hard, if not cruel place to live for many – most notably because of a dire lack of affordable housing. It will take highly committed governments to solve the housing crisis, and in the meantime it will put a phenomenal strain on vulnerable individuals and families.
The children helped by CLICK-supported programs are overwhelmingly in working poor families. Their limited monthly income is eaten up far too much by housing costs, leaving very little for food, transportation and even hydro, let alone clothes, sports and other activities most families take for granted.
In the year it launched, 2004, CLICK directed a total of $9,000 to seven different programs for inner city kids. Last year, in 2016, we directed $122,000 to 58 programs. We’re proud of that track record.
With your support, CLICK can continue to be an on-the-ground, local force for good in the lives of children living in poverty in Vancouver.
Thanks for caring,
Thanks to our generous partners!
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