NEP Advisor Helps Teens New to US Through Nutrition Classes

NEP Advisor Veronica Briles welcomes new young arrivals to the U.S. by helping them navigate American culture. For some of the Central and South American teenage students she works with in Huntington, that means teaching them how to use the food they receive.
“These children were part of the Teen Pack program, a ministry of Love INC, in partnership with Community Harvest Food Bank,” Veronica said. “They receive a backpack of non-perishable food each week. Items may include cereal, soup, shelf-stable milk, juice, fruit, canned protein, and snacks. This program was wonderful, but there was a problem: many of these teens didn’t know how to cook the food they received or they don’t know what it was.”

Veronica contacted their parents and told them about NEP’s Teen Cuisine program.

“I asked them if they wanted to enroll their children in the program. I knew most of these parents since they had already taken the nutrition program with me.”

In addition to learning cooking skills, the teens learned how to create nutritious meals from the items they received.

“They (the students) enjoyed it,” Veronica said. “Some of them have asked if they could do it again.”