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Meet Chef Alex!

Dan, Matt, Jordy, Courtenay, Alex, Emily and Alicia

Because we are (admittedly) not the best about spreading the word about PB &J, it comes as no surprise we have yet to introduce you to all of our wonderful Chefs.  But we would like to actively work on changing that.

So today- meet Chef Alex.  We had the pleasure of meeting her over two years ago and she has since been a fast friend and integral part of PB &J.  Exceptional in the kitchen, warm and kind to the core, and a brilliant advocate for health and wellness in every facet of her life (have I mentioned yet she is the Executive Director of the Alliance of Virginia YMCA’s when she’s not cooking with the kids on Monday nights?) — we are so grateful to have her as part of our team.

Check out the video collaboration between Lighthouse and Big Brothers Big Sisters where you can see Chef Alex at work with her class (mostly behind the scenes until we catch her around minute 1:24…).

Read a little more about her experience with PB &J below:

I think I have one of the best classes at PB&J. Sure, I’m biased
because I’ve either volunteered with or taught the Big Brothers/Big
Sisters Explorers class for over two years, but what I love the most
about this class is that for a few hours we all feel like one big
family sitting down to have dinner together. Each class is never the
exact same group but everyone comes together to enjoy a great meal and
time with one another.

The bonds and connections that have occurred in
the kitchen and over a nutritious dinner are incredible. Not only are
the kids learning a life skill, improving their literacy and math
skills, but they’re also learning how to work together as a team.
Watching the dynamic between nine kids and nine adults is a pretty
incredible experience. I’ve loved watching kids form new friendships,
adults make plans with one another, and the relationships that develop
outside of our time in the kitchen. It’s great to see kids in
different grades from different schools come together with a sense of
purpose. They encourage and help one another throughout the cooking
process and celebrate their creation.

Nothing brings a bigger smile to
my face than watching and listening to a little school their big on
some cooking skill. We all come together to make a meal, but when we
sit down to enjoy the fruits of our labor I can’t help but feel like
we’re all one big family.




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