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Cooking lessons for recently housed in Sudbury

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There is a new community program in Greater Sudbury to help recently housed people within the city’s housing program with food budgeting, meal planning and cooking skills.

The project is a collaboration between St. Andrew’s United Church and the Homelessness Network to help people stay in their homes.

“We are looking at bringing in people who may not have ever cooked before – may be cooking again now that they are in a kitchen in a facility that has a kitchen or a housing it that has a kitchen,” said Jill Bennett, the church’s community kitchen co-coordinator.

“We are looking at restoring confidence in looking after their nutrition. Looking after their basic needs in terms of food.”

So far six newly housed people have taken part in the program held at the church’s multi-purpose building on Larch Street.

“What we saw was that it was one of the most positive experiences in our participants' lives at the time,” said Homelessness Network coordinator Ray Landry.

“They are enthusiastic about it and want to continue in it.”

Coordinators of the church’s community kitchen said the opportunity to socialize is also key to the program.

“Part of the housing first approach long term for stability is to make sure that people reintegrate into society or participate in activities,” said Landry.

Officials with both organizations said with the high cost of food – especially for those living on fixed incomes – budgeting is another key component of the program. 

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