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For Immediate Release

Culinary Arts Isn’t Just About Food

Easterseals UCP Integrates Cooking into Daily Living Skills

Ahoskie, NC, July 23, 2018

Some of the simplest task can be challenging to someone with special needs.  At Easterseals UCP, we strive to teach children and adults with disabilities and mental health challenges the skills they need to live, learn, work and play in our communities.

EMPOWERDaily living skills such as cooking, dressing, personal hygiene and managing money are just a few of the essential tasks individuals should learn to achieve independent living.  Easterseals UCP staff in North Carolina and Virginia integrate those goals into many of the programs including Individual Community Services, Assertive Community Treatment, EMPOWER, Child Development Centers, Autism Services and more.

At EMPOWER in Ahoskie, serving adults in the morning and children in the afternoon during the school year, along with a summer camp, makes cooking a weekly project.  Hope is 49 years old and has an intellectual developmental disability loves to bake cookies. She said, “It’s important to put the cookies on a cooling rack to cool before putting them in the bowl.”

Every February, Hope and other students bake for the annual Valentine’s Day Cookie Gram Fundraiser at EMPOWER.  “We do a cooking project once a week to expose them to a variety of foods they may not otherwise taste,” said Misty Hernandez, EMPOWER Ahoskie Activities Coordinator at Easterseals UCP.

Cooking provides  many benefits including learning to follow directions, addressing multi-sensory processing, fine and gross motor skills, communication and social interaction.  Easterseals UCP is proud to incorporate cooking during the month of July as part of Culinary Arts Awareness Month.

Helpful Cooking Resources:
Boardmaker online
Your Special Chef
Teachers Pay Teachers Recipes


Easterseals UCP works side-by-side with adults and children who are managing disabilities and mental health challenges. We serve as a nurse, a therapist, a social worker, a job counselor, a teacher, a psychologist, a caregiver and a compassionate friend all rolled into one. Our purpose is to help neighbors in need achieve better days and live their best possible life.

Learn more about Easterseals UCP at www.eastersealsucp.com.


For more information contact:
Kathy Edgerton
Easterseals UCP Chief Communications Officer
(O) 919-865-8660
(C) 919-208-0621

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