Meet Some of our Cooking Matters Connecticut volunteers!

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Cooking Matters at the Store offers individuals who may not have the ability to attend a six-week Cooking Matters course the opportunity to engage in a hands-on learning experience gaining skills, such as understanding unit pricing, identifying whole grains, adding more fruits and vegetables to their carts, and many more valuable tips to help them stretch their food dollar. Cooking Matters received funding through Share Our Strength this year to expand our reach, giving us the opportunity to serve a total of 955 individuals.

Cooking Matters would like to acknowledge a few individuals who have gone above and beyond in support of the Cooking Matters initiative.  


Tina Fox Dugdale, Extension Educator of UCONN Department of Allied Health Sciences has coordinated 6 Cooking Matters at the Store Event Days in the Greater Hartford Area. Her students in the Coordinated Undergraduate Dietetics Program and Dietetic Internship Program will assist to provide nutrition education in stores to 450 individuals.

Catalina Quesada, longtime friend and partner of Cooking Matters, coordinates and instructs Cooking Matters at the Store tours for senior citizens in the Greater Hartford area through her work as a Specialist for the Healthy Aging Program with the UCONN Center for Public Health and Healthy Policy. She shares ways to maintain a healthy diet on a fixed or limited income, a service that is invaluable to the aging population.

Kathleen Lovanio, Instructor of  the Practice and Director of Fairfield University’s Health Promotion Center, met Cooking Matters staff member Lisa Schmitt, NDTR, at an outreach event.  During their meeting, they discussed the possibility of training her current nursing students as volunteers for Cooking Matters at the Store. As a result, they will be reaching approximately 100 participants through guided store tours lead by our future nurses.

This is a small sample of the amazing work that is being done by our Cooking Matters community partners. The Cooking Matters staff would like to express our infinite gratitude to all of our community partners for their dedication and desire to serve the people in our communities.

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