MEO families cook up quality family time

Montage Kapalua Bay Chef Justin Horne (left) and former Mama’s Fish House Chef Cory Wells teach families how to prepare Alfredo pasta and Caesar salad during a Zoom presentation of “Ohana Night: Cooking Edition,” part of Maui Economic Opportunity Youth Services’ ‘Ohana Night series. — Photo courtesy Maui Economic Services

Thirteen families chopped garlic, boiled pasta and reduced cream on their stovetops at home under the livestreamed guidance of two local chefs as part of the Maui Economic Opportunity Youth Services’ “‘Ohana Night: Cooking Edition” on Zoom on April 14.

Montage Kapalua Bay Chef Justin Horne and former Mama’s Fish House Chef Cory Wells guided the families through the process of preparing Alfredo pasta and a Caesar salad from a kitchen in MEO’s conference room in Wailuku.

The families were sent a packet of ingredients for the meal and followed the step-by-step instructions from the chefs. The format allowed for two-way interaction with the families from their homes.

“We wanted to do a family strengthening event, where the families spend quality time and cook together,” said MEO Youth Services Director Dane Ka’ae. “Studies have shown regular family dinners are associated with lower rates of depression and anxiety, substance abuse, eating disorders, tobacco use and early teenage pregnancy, as well as higher rates of resilience and self-esteem.”

‘Ohana Night is a series of events designed to improve and strengthen the family unit by engaging in positive activities. Past activities have included game nights and jigsaw and gingerbread-house making.

For more information, contact MEO Youth Services at (808) 249-2990.


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