Share Our Strength’s Cooking Matters program provides participants with hands-on cooking and nutrition classes led by volunteer chefs and nutritionists. These four to six week classes are held in communities in partnership with local agencies. Classes are free to participants and host sites. At each class, participants receive a bag of groceries and recipes to try at home.
In Maine, Cooking Matters is a program of Good Shepherd Food Bank. Classes are offered in all 16 counties through partnerships with Maine SNAP-Ed*, Eat Well Nutrition Program**, 5-2-1-0 and other community organizations.
If you are interested in participating in Cooking Matters or learning more about hosting a Cooking Matters class in your area, please contact Denise Gaudette, Cooking Matters Manager at Good Shepherd Food Bank, firstname.lastname@example.org or (207) 782-3554 X1129
Based on the USDA’s Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the Cooking Matters Maine curriculum teaches healthy eating habits, cooking skills, food shopping and budgeting. Each class focuses on a theme such as fruits and vegetables, cutting fat or healthy snacking. Chefs add their own creative touches with low-cost, nutritious recipes they create and demonstrate with participants’ help.
*Maine SNAP-Ed is funded by the USDA’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, which is administered by the Office for Family Independence (OFI) at the Maine Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and implemented statewide by the University of New England (UNE) through contracts with local community organizations. Maine SNAP-Ed educates families experiencing low income on low-cost healthy eating and active lifestyles.
** The University of Maine Cooperative Extension’s Eat Well Program is federally funded through the National Institute of Food and Agriculture’s (NIFA) Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP). Eat Well staff provide hands-on, direct nutrition education to both limited-income adults with children in the household, and youth in the community who are 5 to 18 years of age. The Eat Well program is available in Androscoggin, Aroostook, Cumberland, Hancock, Kennebec, Oxford, Sagadahoc, and York counties.
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