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Cooking up a storm at Oak Lodge

30th November 2023

Sanctuary Supported Living

Three men stood in a kitchen and smiling at the camera, one wearing a chef's uniform.

Hospitality Services Manager Will Childe with residents Lewis Maund and Perry Osman

Residents at Sanctuary Supported Living’s Oak Lodge, a short-term supported housing service for adults with learning disabilities in Attleborough, Norfolk, have been learning new skills and enjoying delicious meals, thanks to support from Sanctuary Supported Living staff.

Will Childe, Hospitality Services Manager, who oversees the catering and hospitality services across Sanctuary Supported Living, including their commercial kitchens, spent two days with the residents to teach them about cooking tasty meals on a budget. To support the project, Sanctuary Supported Living donated two slow cookers and an air fryer to the Oak Lodge residents. With Will’s support, the residents used their new kitchen gadgets to prepare a variety of classic dishes – including spaghetti bolognese, beef stew, roast chicken and chilli con carne.

Will covered the basics of food safety and showed the residents how to use up leftovers to make healthy and delicious new dishes, while also saving money and reducing food waste. Will also offered further follow-up support to the residents, including access to a bank of over 1,300 recipes, as well as Sanctuary Supported Living's Eating Well for Less recipe book and advice guide. The residents will also have the opportunity to complete food safety courses, leading to a food safety level 2 certificate.

"The skills they’ve gained will help them when they move on to living independently."

Will Childe, Hospitality Services Manager

Will said: "It was a pleasure to visit Oak Lodge. The residents were very engaged and enthusiastic, and they enjoyed eating the food they cooked. We spent £70 and made 64 portions of food – which works out at just £1.10 per meal. I hope they’ve been inspired to get creative on a budget in the kitchen, and that the skills they’ve gained will help them when they move on to living independently."

Gemma Martin, Local Service Manager at Oak Lodge, said: "We are very thankful to Will for supporting us. Here, we enable people to gain the skills they need to live independently, and Will’s visit has really helped them to build their confidence around cooking and healthy eating, while working on their skills and having fun. He gave them lots of tips and tricks to save money and

time, and they’re really keen to try out more recipes – they also have a new-found love for the air fryer!"

Oak Lodge is part of Sanctuary Supported Living, a national provider of accommodation and support services for adults and young people with a range of care, support and housing needs. To find out more about Sanctuary Supported Living’s services in your area, read more about what we do, visit our find local services page, or see our latest news.

This story is shared to mark International Day of Persons with Disabilities, which is celebrated annually on 3 December. The day aims to raise awareness of disability issues and promote the dignity, rights and wellbeing of people with disabilities.

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