The John Burns Foundation, fully adaptable kitchen opened its doors in April 2022, thanks to Lottery Funding to launch the new Food for Thought Programme.

The aim of the programme is to provide an enjoyable environment where individuals and groups of all ages and abilities can learn to cook and about healthy eating as well as experience the benefits of cooking and eating together and build skills and confidence in cooking from scratch.

The fully equipped kitchen, which features seven cooking stations (five of which are height adjustable) provides a friendly, relaxed environment to help groups within the community to develop essential cooking skills and confidence in the kitchen and help to encourage cooking healthier meals from scratch. We focus on the importance of cooking with fresh produce where possible and use produce grown in our community garden.

Since the kitchen opened this year, some of the groups who have used the facility include local schools, community groups and charitable organizations.

One of the ongoing beneficiaries of the Food for Though programme is Mencap Cymru. The six-week cooking programme is supporting young adults to develop confidence and essential skills in the kitchen as well as assisting them to learn how to prepare affordable, healthy meals. The sessions are relaxed and focus on developing essential cooking skills as well as encouraging the participants to cook and eat the meals they prepare, together.

Several schools have also enjoyed sessions in the kitchen. Sessions have focused on produce grown on the 20 acre site surrounding the Foundation including Burns’ own Apple Orchard and the community garden.

The kitchen has also supported events in the John Burns Centre by providing an environment where members of the socially isolated elderly group can use the facility to work together to prepare meals for their monthly lunch gathering.

Future initiatives will see the Food for Thought Programme work with more local charitable organisations as well as schools and parents to develop essential cooking skills in a fun, relaxed environment while encouraging healthy meal choices.

For more information about how to get involved, contact kate@johnburnsfoundation.org