I recently had the opportunity to visit the Oneota Community Food Coop in Decorah, Iowa, while on a travel writer's tour with the good folks of Travel Iowa. The Food Co-op started a series of cooking classes for kids, as part of a before school program. Due to the fact that they offer several educational events, it seemed like a perfect fit. As with any community, the challenge seems to be getting the word out.
When I heard that they were offering a before school program for kids, which involves teaching kids how to cook, I was all ears! I am no Martha Stewart, but I can tell you that I am grateful for all of those cooking lessons that 4-H provided me through the years. When kids are part of the preparation process of putting food together, they quickly become interested. The working kitchen is right next door to the actual storefront itself, which makes it an ideal location. Up to date appliances and utensils to complete any food project make this a win-win for any community.
I would love to hear that the before school cooking program through the Oneota Community Food Co-op has a waiting list. Many parents struggle with finding before school childcare during those tween years and this is the ideal place for those tweens to gather. They are surrounded by people that have a passion for food and making a difference in a community.
Maybe it's the fact that kids and parents don't think cooking matters, when in all reality it really does. Who can afford to eat out all the time? Let's face it, it does get rather expensive. And the other thing about a before school cooking class, is the fact that it offers an offline opportunity for kids. Most of you know that I love being online, but I also love the fact that I can step away from it. Many kids today simply never take breaks from social media, which is not a good thing.
Be a proactive parent and find a before school program that will enhance the life of your child. If you live in Winneshiek County, check out the great programs that the Oneota Community Food Co-op has to offer. If you don't see a program on the list that you think would benefit your family, suggest it to the good folks of the coop. They want folks in Winneshiek County to eat healthier and have fun in the kitchen.
Be sure to "like" the Oneota Community Food Co-op on Facebook to stay up to date on what's happening around the Co--op.
So... tell me. Would you enroll your kids in a before school cooking class? I personally think it's a genius idea! After All, It's All In a Mom's Day, Right?