On a sunny mid-August Friday, Brooke’s Cooks visited the Williamsburg Community Center. This spotlight of nutritional literacy for the kids brightened the day of those participating in the St. Nicks Alliance summer camps of School Settlement Association, PS 34, Small World Child Care, and the Williamsburg Community Center. Since 2005, St. Nicks Alliance has partnered with the Brooke Jackman Foundation to engage parent, guardians, and their children in intensive literacy workshops. Through their Brooke’s Cooks initiative, the Brooke Jackman Foundation promotes healthy eating and awareness by visiting gardens, picking vegetables, and making healthy salads. Today this partnership in Family Literacy runs at 8 sites for 7 weeks, which encompasses over 160 participants and their families.
The kids stepped out into the garden, and Williamsburg Community Center’s Horticulturalist and Urban Farmer, Victor Flores, opened their minds to the all the unseen components (e.g., soil, insects) that go into producing healthy produce. He also opened their taste buds by having them sample some of the garden’s ripe and ready-to-eat crops. The gooseberries (nature’s Sour Patch) were surprisingly popular.
The kids went back inside to be instructed by Brooke’s Cooks Instructor Josh Feinberg on how to make a salad with honey Dijon vinaigrette dressing. They also were informed on the benefits of eating local and the bear claw method holding a vegetable while cutting it.