Essence Youth Mentoring is a girls-only project located in a community which often lacks access to a range of activities during the school holidays. Winter 23/24 was the first time Essence had taken part in Hakuna Fruitata. A group leader from Essence attended a Bring it on Brum! Let’s Talk about Food training session, which provided ideas for a range of practical and interactive workshops to share with young people. In addition to the resources received as part of Hakuna Fruitata, Essence were able to provide a wide range of opportunities for children to do more cooking.

The staff at Essence wanted to use the cooking sessions as an opportunity to share some of their heritage and so all the participants worked together to make Caribbean patties from scratch. This included a ‘smell test’ to try and identify herbs, making the pastry and putting it all together to make patties for everyone to take home.

Feedback from the children at the holiday club clearly showed that the cooking had been their favourite part of the week!