FOCUS ON SENIORS: Serving up pot loads of laughs

News Mar 07, 2017 by Colleen Toms Brant News

There was a lot more cooking than food at the weekly Crock Pot Club in the Beckett Building last Friday.

While food was definitely the focal point, laughter was always simmering under the surface, bubbling up and spilling over every few minutes as community health broker Denise Crabb and the six ladies in her club spoke about the weekly cooking sessions.

Established in 2014 to help seniors cook nutritional and tasty meals for one or two people, the Crock Pot Club has taught seniors so much more.

The Beckett seniors were in the tenth week of the 12-week club and it was clear that the social aspect is just as important as the lessons learned.

“I’ve learned how to cook for two by breaking down a recipe, which was hard to do before,” Joy Edwards said, and, “How to shop properly and fellowship.”

Rather than buying groceries like they did when they were raising their families, the women were shown how to buy smaller quantities, which also adds up to less waste.

“When you are all of a sudden retired and by yourself, it’s difficult to get into the mindset to just get two carrots or a couple of potatoes,” Edwards said.

Most recipes used during the club fed two to three people so leftovers could be frozen and reheated, or the meal could be shared with a friend. 

The smell of food cooking through the day helps to whet the appetite and in many ways, the program made food more enjoyable for the seniors.

Some had often resorted to a bowl of cereal or a peanut butter sandwich for dinner because the thought of cooking a meal for one didn’t interest or inspire them.

“You run out of ideas,” Myra Houston, said. “Spices were always something that I was afraid of and now I know how to prepare food with spices, what spices go best with certain foods and what spices go well together.”

Although this particular group didn’t include any men, men do often come out to the Crock Pot Clubs to learn how to cook for themselves or to help their spouse.

About 200 seniors have participated in the clubs since their inception. Most clubs have been held at Brant Housing seniors’ buildings, the Seniors Resource Centre and at local libraries.

Guest speakers were also brought in throughout the sessions to talk about issues like safe drinking guidelines, preventing slips and falls, being active, preventing disease, dietary needs and other issues related to seniors.

In addition to learning how to access other community resources, the seniors were provided with pedometers, food thermometers, crock pots, spice guides, nutrition guides, flashlights and flexible magnifying lenses that can be kept in their purses to read nutritional information when shopping.

Brant Housing provided the crock pots and food and the Brant County Health Unit provides resources.

The women encouraged other seniors to participate in future sessions.

“There are so many people who say they are lonely or they don’t have anything to do,” Edwards said. “This is teaching them that their apartment isn’t a refuge, come out and join because it helps when you talk to somebody else.”

By participating in such events, seniors get to know who their neighbours are.

“It gives you an opportunity to understand your neighbour,” Kathleen Adams said. “It helps us to say OK, that’s why so-and-so doesn’t come out very often, or that’s why we don’t usually see her.”

Another Crock Pot Club will commence in April. For more information contact the Brant County Health Unit on 519-753-4937 and ask for Crabb.


FOCUS ON SENIORS: Serving up pot loads of laughs

Crock Pot Club is about more than food

News Mar 07, 2017 by Colleen Toms Brant News

There was a lot more cooking than food at the weekly Crock Pot Club in the Beckett Building last Friday.

While food was definitely the focal point, laughter was always simmering under the surface, bubbling up and spilling over every few minutes as community health broker Denise Crabb and the six ladies in her club spoke about the weekly cooking sessions.

Established in 2014 to help seniors cook nutritional and tasty meals for one or two people, the Crock Pot Club has taught seniors so much more.

The Beckett seniors were in the tenth week of the 12-week club and it was clear that the social aspect is just as important as the lessons learned.

“I’ve learned how to cook for two by breaking down a recipe, which was hard to do before,” Joy Edwards said, and, “How to shop properly and fellowship.”

Rather than buying groceries like they did when they were raising their families, the women were shown how to buy smaller quantities, which also adds up to less waste.

“When you are all of a sudden retired and by yourself, it’s difficult to get into the mindset to just get two carrots or a couple of potatoes,” Edwards said.

Most recipes used during the club fed two to three people so leftovers could be frozen and reheated, or the meal could be shared with a friend. 

The smell of food cooking through the day helps to whet the appetite and in many ways, the program made food more enjoyable for the seniors.

Some had often resorted to a bowl of cereal or a peanut butter sandwich for dinner because the thought of cooking a meal for one didn’t interest or inspire them.

“You run out of ideas,” Myra Houston, said. “Spices were always something that I was afraid of and now I know how to prepare food with spices, what spices go best with certain foods and what spices go well together.”

Although this particular group didn’t include any men, men do often come out to the Crock Pot Clubs to learn how to cook for themselves or to help their spouse.

About 200 seniors have participated in the clubs since their inception. Most clubs have been held at Brant Housing seniors’ buildings, the Seniors Resource Centre and at local libraries.

Guest speakers were also brought in throughout the sessions to talk about issues like safe drinking guidelines, preventing slips and falls, being active, preventing disease, dietary needs and other issues related to seniors.

In addition to learning how to access other community resources, the seniors were provided with pedometers, food thermometers, crock pots, spice guides, nutrition guides, flashlights and flexible magnifying lenses that can be kept in their purses to read nutritional information when shopping.

Brant Housing provided the crock pots and food and the Brant County Health Unit provides resources.

The women encouraged other seniors to participate in future sessions.

“There are so many people who say they are lonely or they don’t have anything to do,” Edwards said. “This is teaching them that their apartment isn’t a refuge, come out and join because it helps when you talk to somebody else.”

By participating in such events, seniors get to know who their neighbours are.

“It gives you an opportunity to understand your neighbour,” Kathleen Adams said. “It helps us to say OK, that’s why so-and-so doesn’t come out very often, or that’s why we don’t usually see her.”

Another Crock Pot Club will commence in April. For more information contact the Brant County Health Unit on 519-753-4937 and ask for Crabb.


FOCUS ON SENIORS: Serving up pot loads of laughs

Crock Pot Club is about more than food

News Mar 07, 2017 by Colleen Toms Brant News

There was a lot more cooking than food at the weekly Crock Pot Club in the Beckett Building last Friday.

While food was definitely the focal point, laughter was always simmering under the surface, bubbling up and spilling over every few minutes as community health broker Denise Crabb and the six ladies in her club spoke about the weekly cooking sessions.

Established in 2014 to help seniors cook nutritional and tasty meals for one or two people, the Crock Pot Club has taught seniors so much more.

The Beckett seniors were in the tenth week of the 12-week club and it was clear that the social aspect is just as important as the lessons learned.

“I’ve learned how to cook for two by breaking down a recipe, which was hard to do before,” Joy Edwards said, and, “How to shop properly and fellowship.”

Rather than buying groceries like they did when they were raising their families, the women were shown how to buy smaller quantities, which also adds up to less waste.

“When you are all of a sudden retired and by yourself, it’s difficult to get into the mindset to just get two carrots or a couple of potatoes,” Edwards said.

Most recipes used during the club fed two to three people so leftovers could be frozen and reheated, or the meal could be shared with a friend. 

The smell of food cooking through the day helps to whet the appetite and in many ways, the program made food more enjoyable for the seniors.

Some had often resorted to a bowl of cereal or a peanut butter sandwich for dinner because the thought of cooking a meal for one didn’t interest or inspire them.

“You run out of ideas,” Myra Houston, said. “Spices were always something that I was afraid of and now I know how to prepare food with spices, what spices go best with certain foods and what spices go well together.”

Although this particular group didn’t include any men, men do often come out to the Crock Pot Clubs to learn how to cook for themselves or to help their spouse.

About 200 seniors have participated in the clubs since their inception. Most clubs have been held at Brant Housing seniors’ buildings, the Seniors Resource Centre and at local libraries.

Guest speakers were also brought in throughout the sessions to talk about issues like safe drinking guidelines, preventing slips and falls, being active, preventing disease, dietary needs and other issues related to seniors.

In addition to learning how to access other community resources, the seniors were provided with pedometers, food thermometers, crock pots, spice guides, nutrition guides, flashlights and flexible magnifying lenses that can be kept in their purses to read nutritional information when shopping.

Brant Housing provided the crock pots and food and the Brant County Health Unit provides resources.

The women encouraged other seniors to participate in future sessions.

“There are so many people who say they are lonely or they don’t have anything to do,” Edwards said. “This is teaching them that their apartment isn’t a refuge, come out and join because it helps when you talk to somebody else.”

By participating in such events, seniors get to know who their neighbours are.

“It gives you an opportunity to understand your neighbour,” Kathleen Adams said. “It helps us to say OK, that’s why so-and-so doesn’t come out very often, or that’s why we don’t usually see her.”

Another Crock Pot Club will commence in April. For more information contact the Brant County Health Unit on 519-753-4937 and ask for Crabb.