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Healthy cooking to help mental issues.

PEOPLE with mental health issues are being shown how to cook healthy meals on a limited budget - thanks to a charitable donation.

The WPH Charitable Trust awarded PS1,500 to the Coventry charity Actively Influencing Mental Health Services (AIMHS), so it can continue to deliver its Food For Thought courses.

AIMHS first began food-related training in 2010 and has been regularly oversubscribed. However, since the last course finished in April 2017, no further funding was made available - until WPH Charitable Trust stepped in.

Available for up to ten people a time, the five courses aim to reduce social isolation, increase education and reduce food poverty.

Some people have never been taught how to cook for themselves, while others may have lost their confidence in relation to cooking.

The courses are open primarily to people who live alone and who, for a variety of reasons, have found themselves living more and more on fast food and takeaways.

Andrew Collis, service manager of AIMHS, said: "As well as teaching people how to budget for the ingredients, those who have attended the course have learned to cook a variety of healthy dishes including vegetarian curries, chilli and some lowfat desserts.

"The aim of these and other AIMHS courses is to alleviate social exclusion and to promote health and wellbeing, as well as providing volunteering opportunities for its stakeholders and reducing the stigma associated with mental illness on a local, regional and national level.

"The courses are beneficial to people of all ages and abilities. All take place in public settings, including community venues in the city centre, the public library and a mental health day hospital.

"We are very grateful to WPH Charitable Trust for making it possible for us to carry out this project that is helping to reduce isolation and address issues relating to food poverty of people in our community who endure mental health problems.

"The majority of the grant has paid for food and ingredients, given to people so that they could cook our recipes for themselves at home."

Visit aimhs.org.uk for more information.

CAPTION(S):

Kay Wheeler, AIMHS administrator, and below, a tasty curry and rice dish prepared during a session

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Publication:Coventry Evening Telegraph (England)
Date:Mar 6, 2018
Words:365
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