At The House of the Carpenter on Wheeling Island kids weren’t watching Saturday morning cartoons, they were learning to cook.
“A lot of the kids are from the community, the island here. And it gets them off the streets, gives them something fun to do and they learn how to eat and make healthy meals,” said Michelle Lucarelli, Associate Director of House of the Carpenter.
The junior league of Wheeling partners with the charitable organization to get chopping, peeling, and sauteeing. From healthy nutrition, proper hygiene, to knife skills, these kids know how to prepare a healthy meal for themselves.
“It’s something fun we are able to teach children about in some cases nutrition, to help them learn how to make snacks. Many of the children might be in charge of making their own food or making their own snacks like after school. So it’s just a fun time and the children think it’s special, and it’s a way too that we can teach our own children how to give back to our community,” said Stacey Creely, of the Junior League of Wheeling.
The kids love it too, especially when they get to the dessert station. The festive sugar fix this week was candy Christmas trees.
“You know I think it’s always so great to be able to work with kids and just to see how excited they are when they come in. And, they are getting to do of course a few healthy things but we snuck in a few treats too so they get really excited about that,” said Creely.
Through the fun kitchen environment, some of the kids have found a life-long passion.
“We’ve had kids that have said that this has opened something brand new for them, that they want to be a chef, or they want to learn to work in a kitchen somewhere or maybe even culinary school,” said Lucarelli.
At the end of the day, when the children taste tested their creations, their reactions speak for themselves, everything was delicious.