by Tom Zillich
Source: Surrey Now-Leader
The first virtual camps, free for children between 8 and 12 years of age, were launched on Monday (July 6).
Each camper will “attend” the camps for two weeks, and participate in cooking, nutrition and sports activities through mid-August, said Dr. Greg Chang, a local dentist and culinary educator who founded SuperChefs.
“Having been out of their regular school routine since March, campers and families appear eager to participate,” said Dr. Chang. “SuperChefs enrollment is nearing capacity – and those attending the ingredient pickup on July 5 (from outside Johnston Heights Secondary) were enthusiastic and anxious to get cooking.”
The COVID-19 pandemic prompted the shift online for the camps, now in their 12th year. Registration is done through the website superchefs.org.
The virtual format sticks to the program goal of promoting a healthier generation of youth, with added interactive polls, games and activities. It’s all based on the FACES acronym of making kids Food literate, Aware of food systems, Competent in cooking skills, Engaged in physical activity and able to Savour balanced food choices.
Former BC Lions receiver Geroy Simon, now the football club’s director of scouting, has gotten involved by creating a full-body, family-friendly workout video for the camps.
“As a former professional athlete and a father of two active children, I know the importance of keeping you and your family fit and healthy,” Simon said in a news release. “I am happy to provide tips to be a champion both on and off the field because a fit family is a happy family.”
Chang created the online program with the help of local university students, many of whom are keen to have careers in dietetics, healthcare, education and business. Two of the SuperChefs co-ordinators — Hannah Bailey and Skye Moore — have been accepted into the UBC Dietetics program in September, he said.
Dr. Greg’s SuperChefs Cookery For Kids is a non-profit arm of SuperChefs, described as an entertainment lifestyle private company.
The program receives funding from several community and corporate partners, in addition to federal agencies including the Canada Summer Job program and the federal Emergency Community Support Fund administered by the SurreyCares Community Foundation.
“SurreyCares helps facilitate that strengthening of community capacity, and we can’t say enough about the initiatives of SuperChefs Cookery for Kids,” said Michael Bose, chair of SurreyCares’ grants committee.