Connection through food

Kitchen Connections is a group program for 12-17 year old young women from Bellingen High School run by Bellingen Shire Youth Services. Participants learn a range of life skills and healthy practices that enhance wellbeing.

Growing life skills

Kitchen Connections is a program that Bellingen Shire Youth Services have been running for over five years.

The goal is to provide young women with tools and skills to take care of themselves; through food and practices that enhance resilience and mental well-being.

More than food

Cooking and sharing a meal together is a “youth friendly” approach to build engagement and rapport with young people.  It provides the group with an opportunity to share and learn in a relaxed safe space.

The group might explore issues such as bullying, nutrition, self-esteem, friendships, anxiety, depression and relationships.

Participants are involved in a diversity of activities including journaling, exploring quotes, worksheets, and reflective critical discussions that allow them to explore the thoughts, feelings and issues.

Through group work, they explore tools such as positive self-talk, gratitude practice, self-awareness, kindness, mindfulness and self-care.

We have a close partnership with Bellingen High School and the program is complimentary to the curriculum.  Referrals to the group can come from the school, services, or young people themselves.