On a cool, crisp, fall morning the residents of East Cliff Village, an affordable Senior living apartment complex located in Santa Cruz, California and a Second Harvest Partner Agency, are lined up to receive fresh produce being distributed today through Second Harvest Food Bank Santa Cruz County’s Passion For Produce program. This weeks distribution also includes a cooking demonstration by Delia Bernal, Second Harvest Nutrition Program Manager. Today she is preparing Spaghetti Squash, and residents are excited to attend this portion of the program.
One resident, Marc Parry, a bright, outgoing gentlemen with no fear of cameras came up and caught our attention during our Facebook Live clip. Marc, who has been many things throughout his life including a musician, a newspaper writer, and a goat herder (when he lived in Ireland), was grateful for the distributions and the cooking demonstrations.
Calle, an 82 years young resident and lifetime artist, said the distributions were so helpful because many of the seniors can’t get out to get the food, and many are on fixed incomes and cannot afford the healthy produce in stores. She commented that “the produce distributions and food demonstrations are well received by all the residents.” When asked if she prepares the recipe she learns about at the demonstrations she said “Absolutely, every single one!” and “this is a great idea you guys had” referring to the cooking demo.
Lisa J. Arthur, the Resident Wellness Director for the 75 unit apartment complex, said that over the past 10 years of working there she has seen the difference that the distributions and demos are making. Many residents do not have family close by and the distributions/cooking demos give them a chance to socialize and share in something everyone has in common, the need for healthy food. Arthur also commented that “All three things, the produce distribution, the recipes, and the friendships benefit the residents” Residents line up at East Cliff Village for fresh produce distribution. Julio Neri Andrade, Second Harvest Nutrition Manager, helps a resident pick out some fine looking apples. Delia Bernal, Second Harvest Nutrition Program Manager, getting ready to demonstrate the Recipe of the Month: Spaghetti Squash. Second Harvest Passion For Produce sites offer the opportunity for clients to choose the fresh produce they want such as–potatoes, carrots, and onions, plus fruits and vegetables that are in season. Trained volunteers from the community are there with food tastings, meal ideas, cooking demonstrations, and other information to help promote a healthy lifestyle.
For more information about Passion For Produce and all of our Nutrition Programs visit www.thefoodbank.org/programs
To see today’s visit to East Cliff Village on Facebook Live click here.