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Who We Are
Food Teacher & Trainer
Helo a chroeso i Goginio da'n Gilydd. Fy enw i yw Richard, dw i’n athro bwyd a dechreuais Goginio da'n Gilydd yn 2014. Dw i’n dysgu Cymraeg.
That is about as much as I can write in a full sentence in Welsh, but hopefully what I have written is…
Hello and welcome to Cooking Together. My name is Richard, I am a food technology (or Home Economics as it used to be known!) teacher and I started Cooking Together in 2014. I have been teaching cooking skills and healthy eating within preschools, schools and communities for just over, dare I say it, 20 years!
I started my teaching career in a secondary school in the Rhondda Valley, before going on to run and manage the Health Challenge Wales Cooking Bus on behalf of the Welsh Government/Public Health Wales. This was a fantastic project where we visited a wide range of schools and community settings to promote cooking skills and healthy eating in a fun and interactive way. We also provided training for schools, community and public health staff in order to set up and deliver cooking activities, as well as helping to write and develop the CogUrdd cooking competition.
Sadly, as with all good projects, the Cooking Bus funding came to an end in 2014 and I had to make the decision about what to do next - did I go back into full time teaching or start my own business? So, after a lot of thinking (all of three minutes!), Cooking Together was born!
The aim of Cooking Together is to provide fun, easy to follow and relevant hands on 'healthy cooking' experiences for children, young people and adults. We always ensure that recipes reflect the current healthy eating messages (although we are a great believers in having the occasional treat!). We always use ingredients that are cheap and easy to get hold of within the locations we are working in.
Since starting Cooking Together, I have had the opportunity to work with a wide variety of different organisations, schools and settings all across Wales. I love fact that no session, day or even week is ever the same. I have gained so many different experiences from working with pre-school age children, silver surfers (aka older generations) and everyone in between! I love teaching all of these different age groups, although I have to say as a 40 (something!) year old man with a mental age of 3, I am most at home when cooking with the preschool and foundation phase children!
As mentioned above, I am a Welsh learner or as I like to call it a Welsh Blagger! This means that in addition to teaching lots of cooking skills, we also incorporate lots of incidental Welsh for children and adults to learn during our sessions. Over the years I have particularly enjoyed working with lots of Welsh medium schools, where the children have learnt to cook and they have taught us some new Welsh words!
Jen joined Cooking Together in January 2017, to help with the delivery of our community and afterschool cooking sessions. Like myself, Jen is a qualified Food Technology Teacher (in fact we met at university in Cardiff back in the 90’s!) and spent nearly 15 years teaching in various schools across South Wales, London and Japan, before returning to Cardiff and joining Cooking Together.