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A Growing Team at Growing Chefs! Introducing Alan Chen

January 31, 2018

This January, Growing Chefs! welcomed three new Program/Volunteer Liaisons to our team. We’re thrilled to introduce you to Alan Chen. Welcome, Alan!

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“Hello! My name’s Alan, and I’m excited to join Growing Chefs! as one of their three new Program Liaisons this spring season.

The Growing Chefs! Program lies at the sunny intersection of a few personal passions, three of which include sustainability, cooking, and social change work. My cheeks glow pink for each of these topics on their own terms, but to have the opportunity to work on all three at the same time is another kind of thrill altogether.

What is it that excites me? Well, I’m particularly pumped about how Growing Chefs! changes everything about healthy eating for kids (and by everything, I mean just one thing) – they’re given a paradigm shift. When kids look at salad or broccoli at home, they see a test or an obstacle. In classrooms with Growing Chefs!, every seed, leaf, and root is an opportunity to discover something new on their own terms. There’s little pressure and no judgement, only shared excitement between kids and adults alike.

We get to turn their classrooms into a playground, with the vegetables as their toys and our chefs as their role models. By nurturing their agency to take ownership of a healthier lifestyle, we’re planting the seeds for an important culture-shift. In a world saturated with junk food, consumerist media, and a culture of convenience, priming the hearts and minds of a younger generation with a certain sense of clarity is an inspiring initiative that I feel lucky to be contributing to.

In the brief 23 years I’ve spent learning, I’ve had the privilege of doing so in the company of many compassionate individuals from various change-making communities. Growing Chefs! is one such community that I look forward to growing with and learning from over this next spring season.”


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