Nutrition Is for Everyone October 2017

The Louisiana project will have four inclusive Cooking Matters courses underway during the month of October. One course is being hosted by an Arc of Metairie, and Arc staff have been trained to act as instructors. A second course is being hosted by Helping Hands of New Orleans, a home care agency that will teach the nutrition and culinary lessons to their staff and clients side by side. Staff and clients will learn how to not only improve their own nutrition behaviors individually but will learn how to work together to ensure clients are part of the cooking- and nutrition-related decision-making processes in their homes. A third course will be offered in partnership with the LSUHSC Department of Family Medicine and will be taught by trained medical students enrolled in a nutrition elective course. Students will learn how to engage in real-world nutrition counseling with community members, both with and without disabilities. Finally, a fourth class will be offered in partnership with the Louisiana UCEDD’s Pay Check program, a transition program for young adults with disabilities. Pay Check students will enroll in the Cooking Matters classes alongside their peers at the community college they attend.

The Louisiana project also provided Second Harvest Food Bank with informational materials related to disability and food insecurity to be provided to state policymakers at their presentation on debunking myths around food bank use at the end of September. The materials highlighted research that shows that people with disabilities and their families are at greater risk of economic hardship and therefore greater risk for periods of food insecurity. The Louisiana project is also exploring ways to advocate for improved Complete Streets policies in the New Orleans area in order to ensure people with disabilities are able to access health and nutrition-related resources.

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