Munchout bridges generation gap

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SENTRAL Youth Services is celebrating a bumper attendance for its first Intergen Munchout program, which wrapped up over Easter.

Youth Worker Dylan Powell said Intergen Munchout built on the success of the existing Munchout pilot program.

“Munchout is an eight-week program involving nutritional and cooking activities, providing younger people the knowledge and skills to manage their fitness and nutrition,” Dylan said.

“What we did with Intergen Munchout was involve older residents alongside the youngsters, to work on the positive social aspects of cooking and sharing food.”

“We all want a healthy, safe and inclusive community, and this program is a simple but powerful way to help achieve that.”

More than 40 people packed the courtyard at the SENTRAL cottages in Hindmarsh Park, to share a meal and celebrate the end of the program.

“It was great to have so many people turn up, and especially as there was an 50/50 split between young and old.”

“We had teenagers rubbing shoulders with retirees, eating chatting and getting to know each other, all in glorious autumn sunshine.”

Over the eight weeks, the participants, led by Chef Michelle Townsend, went through a range of lessons and activities.

The program starts with the basics of why a healthy lifestyle is important and how to cook a meal using a recipe, as well as food safety and kitchen hazards.

It then moves on to food psychology, the importance of fats, protein and carbs for everyday living, food alternatives for allergies and diet variations.

“We also cover understanding and creating meal plans for all body types, the ups and downs of fast food, and the difference between whole food and processed food.”

The feedback from those who took part has been overwhelmingly positive, including 18 year old Jacob.

“I feel great, it was awesome to catch up after with the trainer and hang with all the people from the program,” Jacob said.

“I feel mentally stronger and confident in my skills I have developed from Munch Out and I feel better about myself.”

Dylan said the older residents who took part were similarly enthusiastic with many wanting to help out with the next program.

The NSW Government provided funding support for Intergen Munchout through its Youth Opportunities program.