Cooking Matters Colorado & Caring for Colorado to Partner
DENVER, CO – (February 2019) Caring for Colorado Foundation approved a new project grant to Cooking Matters Colorado (CMCO) in the amount of $75,000 to help reduce health disparities for children in low-income families in underserved areas. Founded in 1994, CMCO helps end childhood hunger by inspiring families with limited food budgets—and child care providers who care for low-income children—to have the skills needed to regularly serve nutritious foods to kids 0-5. CMCO has helped meet the basic need of hunger while strengthening the physical and financial health of over 120,000 Colorado families through food skills and nutrition education.
Caring for Colorado is a health grantmaking foundation dedicated to promoting health and improving healthcare for the people of Colorado. Their grant award will support Cooking Matters Train-the-Trainer model and implementation of Cooking Matters for Parents and Cooking Matters for Childcare Professionals courses in 13 high-need counties, and in partnership with 9 community-based partners. Cooking Matters expects to reach approximately 500 families with this generous investment.
CMCO recognizes food access as a critical health equity issue. Food security and regular access to nutritious meals are essential for healthy mental, emotional, and physical childhood development. Children who are deprived of healthy, nutritious foods—and particularly those who are exposed to additional environmental stress factors, known as “toxic stress,” which can be prevalent in low-income families—are at increased risk of poor developmental outcomes. This can set a child up for a multitude of challenges later in life. Adequate nutrition provides critical resiliency to the developing brains and bodies of young children, equipping them with a better and more equitable chance for emotional, cognitive, and developmental success.
Together, Cooking Matters Colorado and Caring for Colorado Foundation will empower parents and caregivers of low-income children ages 0-5 to access, purchase, prepare and serve healthy food; ultimately helping to increase nutritional protective factors that ensure children have every opportunity to achieve their full potential.