Cooking delicious healthy food kids love!

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We appreciate our supporters:

The Junior League of the Roanoke Valley
The Roanoke Natural Foods Co Op
Physicians to Children

and so many individuals who believe in what we do!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Happy Healthy Cooks on WSLS 10's "Our Blue Ridge"

Monday, April 5, 2010

Happy Healthy Cooks on TV! WSET / ABC 13

ABC 13 came to do a story on us as a lead-in to Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution show on the same network:

Roanoke Co., VA - A new program is underway at one Roanoke elementary where a group of volunteers is trying to educate students at an early age about the importance of trying new foods.In the class, “Happy Healthy Cooks," students learn to take a bite out of bad nutrition.Heather Quintana was so concerned about the food on the menu at her child's school that she now brings cooking to the classroom, once a week, for the 75 first graders at Grandin Court Elementary.

"I want them to be open to eating fruit and vegetable and whole grain and maybe look at that Pop Tart and say, 'Maybe that's not so good for me,'” she said. “We're a group of volunteers who feel really passionate about having kids exposed to healthy, delicious foods in a non-threatening, hands-on environment."

Cathy Cox is the Roanoke City (web) Schools wellness director. She's interested in Quintana's "Happy Healthy Cooks" program because it's her job to work with kids, district-wide, in understanding the importance of eating good food."We always want our kids to try new foods because their taste buds need to get used to foods they wouldn't try at home necessarily," she said.Which is part of the problem. When Cox wants to switch around school menus to be more nutritious, kids, many of whom get a bulk of their nutrition from school, often times opt out for fear of trying new foods. The children lose and the food program at school loses because less kids involved means less money supporting the school lunch program.

"If kids are learning about the food and involved in preparing the food they're more likely to be open to trying it," Quintana said.

"So that they aren't cranky and they're coming to school in a good mood. Food has a direct effect on their behavior," Cox said. "So it's the parents, the school system, it's the collaborative effect to get kids to try new foods."