2017 is shaping up to be an exciting time for Empower to Cook. In early December we moved into our new premises, and since then, we have been hard at work clearing the space and transforming it from a photographic studio into a community cookery and wellbeing kitchen. We’ve made lots of progress and hope to be finished very soon.
To introduce the new space to our friends and supporters, we held a pre-launch open evening on 27th February. The event was jointly hosted with Khepera CIC, nutrition educators, who we are collaborating with and are sharing the community kitchen with us. It was a fantastic night attended by over 40 people, many of whom were heads of department from local government, public health, local schools and businesses, and included the Mayor of High Wycombe, Zia Ahmed and Councillors Lesley Clarke OBE and Matt Knight.
Meanwhile, our day-to-day work continues with two exciting new projects. We have just been awarded funding by the Big Lottery Fund to carry out a ‘Kids as Teachers’ project at Chiltern Wood School. Groups of children with learning difficulties will take part in a course that teaches them to teach their parents to cook.
We are also working with Marsh and Micklefield Big Local to run a Community Cook project. Over the coming weeks, we will be holding sessions for parents and children at Beechview School. The families are taught new techniques for cooking nutritious meals that are affordable and can be easily replicated at home, including using up leftovers and store cupboard ingredients.
We are still looking for people to support us in a variety of ways. At the open evening we had a pledge tree with leaves to represent the business requirements and skills that we need to move forward as a social enterprise. It includes opportunities for volunteering as well as financial assistance. If you can help in any way, we would love to hear from you.