WATERLOO: Moore Park local Ezel Yildiz, aged 11, has won a $10,000 grant to build a Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden after winning a nationwide Coles colouring competition.
The $10,000 grant is one of three awarded across the country and will help Moore Park Children’s Early Learning Centre in Waterloo to install a new kitchen garden full of fresh fruit and vegetables. It will also go towards purchasing kitchen essentials, including appliances, cookware, benches and pantry items.
With one in four Australian children either overweight or obese, the kitchen garden program operates in more than 2,000 schools and early learning centres across Australia and teaches children and their families how to grow, harvest, prepare and share fresh, seasonal food.
Moore Park Children’s Early Learning Centre owners, Raquel and David Epstein, said Ezel’s incredible achievement will have a lasting effect on the centre’s children and educators.
“The grant will allow us to build our very own vegetable garden allowing our students to try the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden recipes via our school canteen services.”
Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden CEO, Josephene Duffy, said she is happy that the partnership with Coles was helping more kids to eat fresh food.
“The Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Program teaches children where their food comes from and to love fresh, healthy, delicious food. We are delighted that this partnership with Coles has allowed us to expand our program to the community at Moore Park Childcare.”
Coles Waterloo Store Manager, Sam Urquhart, said it will be great to see local families put more fresh fruit and veg in their baskets when they complete their weekly grocery shops.
“This new program teaches children to prepare, enjoy and love fresh healthy food, which is something we are also passionate about at Coles. I’m looking forward to seeing some little chefs with their shopping lists come and visit us in store,” he said.
Founded by renowned Australian chef Stephanie Alexander AO, the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation reaches more than 250,000 Australian children and aims to make healthy eating second nature. Coles launched a three-year partnership with the charity in February.