2021 Grant Recipient – ‘Healthy Women, Healthy Families’

Portland’s Amelia Lovett plans, shops and prepares the healthy food for the women’s group. Picture: Portland Observer

A project to help build connections between indigenous women in Portland, through cooking and sharing indigenous ingredients, was successful in receiving a grant this year.

The ‘Healthy Women, Healthy Families’ program at Dhauwaurd-Wurrung Elderly and Community Health Service (DWECHS) is helping support the local indigenous community by teaching women healthy and tasty recipes using produce from their onsite indigenous food garden.

DWECHS Corporate Services Manager Melissa Berry said the program is a great way to give back to the community and to make a difference in the lives of the women involved.

“Without the support of the Foundation we wouldn’t be able to run this class, it wouldn’t get off the ground,” she said.

“We are able to purchase cooking equipment and get an indigenous facilitator to teach participants in our women’s group cooking skills using indigenous plants. The women will then go away with the skills and knowledge, the cultural understanding, and some healthy food options using the native food options to make things tasty when they cook for their families.”

As well as teaching cooking skills the program is designed to build connections within the community, and help participants feel a sense of achievement.

“It’s a really great thing the SWCF has come through with this grant,” Ms Berry said. “It’s going to make such a difference in these women’s lives, they will feel so proud learning these new skills.

“We are just so grateful that we can do this. I feel blessed.”

December 31, 2021