Our HEALing Kitchen” is a “garden-to-kitchen” curriculum that provides knowledge and skill-building to increase fruit and vegetable selection, preparation, and consumption. This curriculum places emphasis on locally grown food and the benefits of eating a diet that is rich in fresh fruits and vegetables and low in saturated fats, sugars, and processed foods. “Our HEALing Kitchen” can also help support other foundation missions of the house.
HEAL, a partnership between St. Joseph Community Health Foundation and Parkview Health, is now offering funding to enable local organizations and churches to offer cooking classes aimed at helping people learn new, fun, and affordable ways to integrate healthy foods into their daily diets. Evaluations show that Our HEALing Kitchen classes have been successful in increasing daily fruit and vegetable consumption by participants as well as increasing confidence in cooking meals on a budget. For example,
- The percentage of individuals who ate at least 2 cups of vegetables in the past 24 hours increased from 36.2% pre to 50% post. Additionally, there was a decline of 6.8% of those who ate none from pre to post.
- The percentage of individuals who were either Confident or Very confident they can use basic cooking skills increased from 66.7% pre to 80% post.
- The percentage of individuals who were either Confident or Very Confident they can make balanced meals on a budget increased from 57% pre to 75.7% post.