22 March 2019
Food: Bringing Joy & Spice to Our Lives! – By Interchange Australia Consultant, Amber Hall
Food is a person’s fuel, an essential part of our lives that brings us great joy and offers tremendous experiences as we taste different ingredients. Without essential nutrients from food our bodies can’t survive or thrive!
Preparing and cooking food provides many positive benefits, including:
- Learning new recipes and cooking techniques – an important life skill that fosters independence;
- Enhanced self-confidence and self-esteem – preparing and cooking a meal is an accomplishment. When you are cooking for family or friends, you will often receive compliments that boosts your self-confidence and self-esteem;
- Stress and anxiety relief – focusing on the ingredients and the steps required to cook a particular meal acts as a distraction from everyday worries and concerns;
- Increased social interaction – cooking with others or for others brings people together in a social environment;
- Increased creativity – improvising and experimenting with recipes evokes creativity; and
- It’s healthier and less expensive than ordering food – you have control over the ingredients you use and buy
Interchange Australia offers a variety of cooking activities that contribute to the overall wellbeing of our clients.If you are an aspiring chef, would like to learn how to cook or would just like to have fun in the kitchen, you are welcome to join our Mix Masters cooking group. The group meet fortnightly at Springett House on a Tuesday to learn new recipes and cooking techniques in a brand new kitchen, generously donated by The Springett Family Foundation. Clients learn how to use a variety of kitchen appliances and ingredients to create a delicious two-course meal to enjoy with friends. Cooking is also a weekly activity as part of our Day Options Program. Fresh vegetables and herbs grown in the gardens of our campuses are used as ingredients.
Other food related activities and supports offered by Interchange Australia include:
• support from our dedicated support workers with grocery shopping and meal preparation in your home;
• group visits to a range of cafes and restaurants to enjoy socialisation and delicious cuisines on offer;
• assistance with PEG (Percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy) feeding to clients with varying support needs; and
• regular dinner groups and themed events, featuring a wide range of food including BBQs, Italian, Mexican, German, and special celebrations such as Christmas in July.
For people requiring food to be delivered to their homes, there are a number of providers that can deliver ready-made nutritional meals including Meals on Wheels in the Southern Highlands. You can visit their website for more information.
To learn more about our cooking related activities and supports, please call our team of friendly consultants on 1300 112 334.