NZMA has teamed up with food rescue organisation KiwiHarvest to give 450 South Aucklanders an extra special Christmas this year.
The South Auckland Christian Foodbank Christmas Party will be held on December 2, providing festive fare and cheer to those in need in the local community. Excess fresh, chilled and frozen foods from supermarkets, cafes, and other food-related businesses will be rescued by KiwiHarvest and delivered to NZMA’s Sylvia Park Campus. Using the donated ingredients, 30 of NZMA’s Diploma in Professional Cookery students will spend three days designing and cooking a mouth-watering feast for the large crowd. Food will then be delivered to the event, and NZMA students will help serve it.
Jasbir Kaur – NZMA’s Sylvia Park Campus Manager for Culinary Arts - said the provider welcomed any opportunities to help the local community, and being involved in an event of this magnitude, and at this time of year, was especially exciting.
“We jumped at the opportunity to cook for such a good cause, and for such a large number of people. It’s a very meaningful way for us to contribute, especially at this time of year, which can be so difficult for those living below the breadline.
“It will also be a great learning experience for our students. Working with KiwiHarvest really encourages them to think on their feet, as they don’t know what specific food items will be rescued and delivered, so they can’t design the menu until the last minute!”
With 450 mouths to feed, a huge amount of preparation will be required and quantities of food will be vast. A hundred kilos of meat and 13 kilos of pasta goes along way, but Jas said they’ll need all this and much more to cater for the crowd.
This is not the first time NZMA students have volunteered their culinary skills to help KiwiHarvest. Recently 27 students spent their Saturday on Campus cooking for 100 people. The fruits of their efforts were then delivered to Ronald McDonald House. NZMA also offers its kitchen training facilities to KiwiHarvest for two hours every week so they can wash their dishes and get trained up on food safety.
“The NZMA kitchen facility is also available for bookings from other groups for our on-going Cooking for a Cause programme. This programme provides so many opportunities to educate, engage and of course produce fabulous meals to nourish our needy.”