California Youth Connection Iron Chef Contest a Success!

On Thursday night November 20th, 2014, 6 California Youth Connection (CYC) Youth from the Contra Costa Chapter made history by competing in the first Annual CYC Iron Chef Contest. The theme of the night? REAL FOOD! Each youth was trained during the course of 4 weeks, meeting in the Sustainable Hospitality Kitchen Classroom at Mt. Diablo High School in Concord, CA to compete in this contest. They learned everything from food safety to how to create healthy meals and snacks from scratch. Each student was awarded a certificate of completion prior to the competition.

The purpose of the event was to raise awareness of the challenges youth are facing trying to eat healthy and stay healthy while living in the foster care system and the importance of teaching nutrition and healthy living skills to each and every youth in the system.

Each youth was paired with either a student chef from the Sustainable Hospitality Program or adult program leader from the CYC network. They were tasked to use all of the ingredients in their “basket” in be ready to present their meals in 1 hour and 30 minutes. Three judges were there to taste and rate their meals based on: presentation, taste, creativity and healthiness.

As the Education Program Manager for Wellness City Challenge, I was honored to help coordinate this event! This is a perfect example of how schools, the community and our youth are coming together to support healthy living through real food!

Congratulations to our youth chefs!!

Special thanks to the staff of CYC for making this event a reality!

Photos by Kristin Zellhart