Cooking program to return to Canterbury in July

Posted on Tuesday, 28 June 2022

Participate Australia’s Cooking Club, which teaches basic kitchen skills to people with disabilities, is back after a pandemic hiatus thanks to a $3,850 donation from Canterbury League Club.

The award-winning Cooking Club program, which launched at the Club in 2018, will be re-starting next month. Over the course of six weeks, participants will learn how to shop and cook simple meals inside of Canterbury’s spacious commercial kitchen whilst being mentored by the Club’s Food & Beverage General Manager, Stephanie Azar. She will show them basic knife skills, food preparation skills, tools to use in the kitchen and occupational, health and safety procedures like proper food storage and cleaning up after use.

“Participants also learn how to budget for meals, decision-making, reading recipes and measuring ingredients, as well as the chance to work on socialising skills from mixing with other participants,” said Andrea Natoli, Participate Australia’s Manager Partnerships, Marketing & Diversification.

“The impact of the program on our participants is immeasurable as each of them will learn different things depending on their goals – some are striving towards greater individual independence by being able to cook their own meal, others want to leave home and live independently, and others want to be able to help support their families by being able to contribute at home.”

“During Covid-19 we had to cancel the Cooking Club after the first class, as well as all our other group programs, because we went into lockdown. This is the first group course since restrictions have eased and participants can’t wait to get back into the kitchen!” said Andrea.

“Working with Participate Australia over the last few years has been an enriching experience for me and it has been my privilege to pass on my cooking and chef skills to the participants – they are super motivated to learn, and we have fun together in class every week. Cooking is such a useful life skill, everyone needs to eat after all!” said Stephanie Azar, Food & Beverage General Manager.