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‘A day of the week I look forward to’

Our Zoom cooking sessions have been a huge benefit to retired Colyton resident Brian during the Covid crisis.

Brian first discovered Project Food in 2019 when his wife, who had been a brilliant cook, passed away. Unsure how to prepare healthy meals for himself from scratch rather than just use the microwave, he came along to our face-to-face ‘Cooking for One’ demonstrations.

When the pandemic hit, Brian was advised to shield and was extremely grateful to Project Food for offering a delivery service from its Food Hub in Axminster (now sadly closed). ‘The staff at Project Food were the first people to help me,’ he said. He then decided to sign up for one of our online cooking sessions.

Thanks to his weekly Zoom class with Ian on a Friday morning, Brian’s cooking skills have gone from strength to strength. Brian really appreciates Ian’s relaxed and inclusive teaching style and his self-deprecating sense of humour. ‘Ian really makes you feel at ease,’ he says, ‘and gives you the confidence to ask questions and to have another go if the dish doesn’t work out the first time’. He has picked up numerous hints and tips from Ian, and now cooks a far wider range of healthy meals than before.

Just as important, however, is the camaraderie he has felt from his Zoom cookery group. Living alone in a pandemic can be an isolating and monotonous experience, and Brian says that the class has had enormous mental health benefits for him. ‘It’s a day of the week I look forward to’, he says.

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