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Volunteer Profile: Tara Hanacek

July 29, 2013
We’re so thankful to have the support of some of British Columbia’s top restaurants. Restaurants like Tableau Bar Bistro and their chefs have been involved in our Classroom Gardening and Cooking Program for a number of years. Chef Tara Hanacek of Tableau Bar Bistro took time from her busy schedule to teach children about the importance of growing and cooking their own food over the last three months. Read on to find out why Tara decided to get involved!

Chef Tara of Tableau Bar Bistro cooking stir-fry for the big in-class picnic

Chef Tara of Tableau Bar Bistro cooking stir-fry for the big in-class picnic

Name: Tara Hanacek
Occupation: Chef, Tableau Bar Bistro

Why did you decide to get involved with the Growing Chef! Classroom Gardening and Cooking Program?
I decided to volunteer for Growing Chefs! because I truly believe in this amazing program. In previous years, I had not had the freedom to dedicate myself as a volunteer. Growing Chefs! transforms children’s ideas about vegetables and teaches them valuable skills. I think it is very important to teach children (especially in urban schools) about where their food comes from and about the importance of eating nutritiously.

What was it like to be a Growing Chefs! volunteer?
Volunteering with Growing Chefs! was an eye-opening experience for everyone involved. The children and other volunteers taught me a lot. I had a great, supportive and eager team who all helped make this program fun and educational. Everyone added their unique knowledge and skills to round out the team nicely. We all pitched in to keep it exciting for the children and ourselves. As a volunteer, you get to know the children and watch them evolve into veggie lovers.

What was your favorite Classroom Gardening and Cooking Program moment?

My favourite classroom moment had to be on Salad Day (lesson 5). After demonstrating how to make salad dressing we let the kids make their own salad with carrots, beets, a variety of greens, and sunflower seeds. A silence fell over the class as each child dug their forks hungrily into their self-constructed towers of salad. After a few quiet moments one boy shouted, “I love salad. Salad is the best lunch ever!!”
It was awesome.


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