Joy every time I took a bite
“Lola” became ill about two weeks into one of our food skills programs called Cook Ahead.
This program focuses on meal planning and preparing big batches of healthy and delicious food that participants take home with them to eat later.
Lola had attended the first sessions of Cook Ahead, loved it so much, and was eager to return once she got better.
There were many reasons why she wanted to come back. It was fun to cook with others, the recipes were delicious and easy to make, she was eager to learn more, and she wanted to get a cook book at the end of the program.
But most of all, Lola found the group to be very welcoming and friendly.
One day while talking to a participant who was also a chef, she asked why he comes to this program. “For the social aspect”, he replied. For Lola, this was also a big reason why she wanted to come back after her illness.
For her, the program “completely opened her life because bringing food home that I helped create, with people whose company I enjoyed, gave me joy every time I took a bite”.
Another day CRC’s Volunteer Coordinator came to the program and talk about the volunteer opportunities at CRC. Lola asked herself, “If you love this place, why don’t you help out?” She immediately sent in an application to be a volunteer, started to be at CRC more, and learned about the different programs offered.
She was able to find a volunteer position that fits her skill set, and now raves to people about CRC and how it feels like home.
When asked about what she values about CRC, Lola says, “If I had to pick one characteristic of CRC, it would be dignity. I’ve volunteered and been to other places where the organization serves meals. But here it’s totally different. It’s like coming to a restaurant. Low income folks get to be treated like an honoured guest.”
By Emily McKenzie, Food Skills Coordinator