There’s no better way of getting to know people than cooking and eating together. Food helps break down social barriers and combats loneliness, whilst a nutritious diet can be one of the main cornerstones of a healthy lifestyle alongside regular exercise. It’s for these reasons that GCDA has been running free weekly Cookery Clubs across Greenwich and Lewisham for many years now, with the clubs in both boroughs funded by the councils’ Public Health departments. The aims of the clubs are to increase participants’ awareness of healthy eating and to develop the skills required to prepare meals using affordable, easily accessible ingredients, without the need for a kitchen full of the latest gadgets!
Typically, the Cookery Clubs are run in community venues and are open to everyone, regardless of previous ability or experience. You’ll find 60 clubs running across Greenwich per year in 5-week blocks, with up to 12 participants taking part each time. In addition, GCDA can also tailor an offer for individual groups and organisations – they’ve previously worked with Age Concern, Nepalese groups, Army families and older residents in supported housing
The tutors are trained and experiences, so you know that you’re learning from the best. Many started out attending Cookery Clubs themselves and loved the experience so much that they decided to specialise and train as tutors themselves!
And as for results? Well they speak for themselves, last year GCDA ran 82 Cookery Clubs and reached a total of 762 people. Nearly half said they’d increased the number of meals they cooked from scratch and when
it came to eating more healthily, there were real improvements too: 55% of participants reported an increase in the amount of fruit and veg they eat, 43% had cut down on sugary drinks, 65% measured the oil they used in their food and 42% had started measuring salt when cooking.
Mel Taylor, the cookery club programme manager said “The cookery clubs are a real asset to the borough, and GCDA feels incredibly privileged to run them. The impact we see at every club includes healthier behaviours, but the social benefit that people report has made a real impression and we feel incredibly privileged run these clubs in Greenwich and Lewisham.”
But the best testimonials come from those who actually attend the clubs
“The tutor is brilliant. She has given me confidence and is kind and really knowledgeable.” – John from Glyndon club
“I love the course! I’m getting loads of new knowledge and the social interaction is great; it’s wonderful meeting people from other cultures” – Mary from Trinity club
“I’m more confident in cooking, chopping and reading labels, thank you so much for this great course!” – Surjit from GCDA club
If you’d like to come to one of GCDA’s cookery clubs you can see all the venues, days and times here and call 0800 4704831, or you’d like to commission a bespoke offering for your organisation then please contact firstname.lastname@example.org