A wise woman once told us an inter-generational project needs a one-generation gap between the participants to be successful— the same winning strategy Tasty Traditions used. When senior women volunteered to mentor girls in healthy eating and food preparation, they discovered something unexpected: The women themselves were learning alongside the girls. This inter-generational food project seamlessly integrated a sense of safety, social skills, and physical and mental wellness for everyone involved.
Grant Program: World Day of Prayer
Year of Grant: 2017-2018
Grant Amount: $3,700
Eighteen girls between 11-13 years old began preparing food with eight women volunteers in the fall of 2017. They will meet for sessions throughout the school year. Some of the girls come from broken homes, abusive situations, have poor social skills or are underprivileged.
The program uses recipes that follow Canada’s Food Guide, are economical, and that the girls can easily prepare at home. The structure encourages girls to work in groups and respect their peers. As a result, their parents, teachers, and the volunteers have noted significant and positive changes in the girls. By learning to be self-sufficient they feel empowered and improve their self-esteem.
The women mentors enjoy their relationship with the girls, sharing their experiences and knowledge. The Tasty Traditions program also gives them an opportunity to be a part of the community and break their isolation.
“The girls are always excited and look forward to every class. It’s great to see these girls getting along with each other!”
“I’ve learned so much from the program. New ways to cook and tasting food I never had before.”
“Our daughter comes home excited to be in the kitchen and try the recipe on the family. She helps me in the kitchen now!”
“Girls club is so much fun and we love coming to Avante to cook!”