Sign up to Wetherby Man with a Pan scheme

A charity funded culinary campaign to get kitchen-shy older men cooking has issued a final call for sign-ups.

Thursday, 13th January 2022, 2:11 pm

Wetherby in Support of the Elderly (WiSE) is working with Wetherby Man with a Pan to (MWAP) to deliver the course for men aged 50 or over - with just one more place available.

The programme gets underway in February and sees experienced cook Lesley Titchmarsh deliver kitchen training to men who lack basic cooking skills - boosting their physical, social and mental wellbeing at the same time.

Jennifer Siswick, Volunteer Coordinator for Wetherby MWAP, said: “Our last course of MWAP took place in September and was a huge success.

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“One of the men taking part had never peeled a carrot before attending, but along with the group, produced his own serving of many meals, including salmon with ratatouille and baby potatoes followed by poached pears with chocolate sauce.

“National research has revealed that many men over 50 lack the basic knowledge needed to cook cheap, healthy meals from scratch.

“Often they simply haven’t picked up cooking knowledge, either for cultural or education reasons.

“In other cases people have suddenly found themselves having to cook for themselves - perhaps because they are widowers, unexpected carers or now live alone.”

Man With A Pan is inspired by a similar scheme piloted in Kent in 2014, which was hailed for the impact it had on the lives of its participants.

The six-week courses, with each session four hours long, are funded by WiSE and other local agencies. They are completely free with all ingredients, equipment and utensils provided.

Mark Dobson, Chief Operating Officer at WiSE, said: “We are pleased to fund these courses.

“Not only will they give participants the tools necessary to cook for themselves, they will also boost confidence, self-esteem and social contact, which fits with our ethos. We really hope we can find someone to fill this last place.”

The first four-hour session at St James Church, The Parish Centre, starts on Tuesday February 9, 9am, with one place remaining.

To sign up, contact St James Parish Office on 01937 583074. A further course will follow in September.