Families across Bath and North East Somerset are being supported to make healthier eating choices thanks to the Community Wellbeing Hub.
The hub, which is a collaboration between Bath & North East Somerset Council, Virgin Care and 3SG, was formed in March to provide a range of support to residents during the coronavirus pandemic.
Many of the calls the hub has received have been for food support. Staff at the hub’s ‘food pod’ take a holistic approach to their response from providing emergency food to signposting to advice services. One of the most popular food support services they offer are cookery courses. Provided by Bath & North East Somerset Council’s partners Virgin Care to families with children under 18, the five-week ‘Cook It’ courses teach participants how to cook a range of low-cost, healthy, nutritionally balanced meals while providing information on food hygiene, labelling, budgeting and meal planning.
Andrew Weeks and his daughter are recent graduates of the ‘Cook It’ course. Andrew said: “The cookery course is fantastic, easy to follow, fun and rewarding. My seven-year-old daughter has gained so many skills and her confidence has grown over the last four weeks with the variety of weekly recipes offered. Clare is an excellent host, very knowledgeable and interacts brilliantly both with the kids and adults. We especially like the YouTube video tutorials which keep tasks simple and clear, improving my daughters focus and concentration.”
Andrew’s views are echoed by Keynsham Mum Sarah Sealey: “The ‘Cook It’ family course is a great fun way to encourage children into the kitchen, introduce them to new foods and help them understand nutrition with exciting and bright recipes to try out. Each recipe comes with a short YouTube video that children can follow, learning how to chop and prepare as well as to cook their own meal. Being part of the process is really helping my daughter to be more adventurous and choose healthier alternatives. She really does enjoy the meals she has cooked more. I have gained a little chef in the kitchen and it’s lovely to see how excited my daughter is each week choosing which recipe she wants to cook with her Mum or Dad.”
The courses are currently run online, and each session is around two hours long.
Jo Scammell, Head of Commissioning and Wellbeing Services, Virgin Care, said: “As we head into the New Year many people will be considering making resolutions. After nine months of living under restrictions and lockdown perhaps you feel now is the time to reassess your family’s diet, but don’t know how cook healthy nutritious meals from scratch or maybe you struggle to feed your family on a tight budget. Our ‘Cook It’ team are here to help as you reconsider your food choices.”
Councillor Rob Appleyard, cabinet member for Adult Services, added: “These are fantastic courses that really help people who have reached out for food support to ultimately help themselves. From learning how to hygienically prepare food to cooking healthy nutritious meals for the family on a budget, the courses provide essential life skills and are great fun.”
The next online ‘Cook It’ course starts on Tuesday 12 January. To find out more information contact the hub by:
- Calling: 0300 247 0050
- Emailing: BATHNES.email@example.com.
- Texting: 07870 868368
- Visiting the Website: www.communitywellbeinghub.co.
You can also follow the hub on social media. Twitter – @CWHBANES
The Community Wellbeing Hub is open from Monday to Friday 9am until 5pm.