Our kitchen garden community across the country call and email the Foundation regularly with questions about curriculum integration, kitchen safety, funding opportunities, upcoming training or even just what they should or shouldn’t put in their compost! These call and emails are responded to by our incredible Support & Delivery team: with a wealth of knowledge from their own experiences in kitchen garden schools and services, there is no query they can’t answer.
Name: Jessica Brien
What is your role at the Foundation? Support & Delivery Officer. I support schools and early learning services on their kitchen garden journey through phone, email and web-based support, as well as face-to-face when I can! I work closely with supportive local councils, as well as the Foundation's partners and stakeholders. I help with membership promotion, queries and professional development when needed.
What is your Spirit Kitchen or Garden Tool and why? The food processor - I'm a versatile and efficient kitchen appliance. I can chop, grate, slice and dice, and aim to help with most activities in the quickest but most effective way. My abilities stretch far and wide, and I am a reliable one-stop shop for a variety of tasks.
What is your favourite resource or recipe on the Shared Table? The Shared Table is full of hundreds of amazing resources - it is tricky to pick just one! Currently my favourite resource is the KGP at home collection. This is an extensive resource that our team created this year for the kitchen garden community for when students were learning remotely. It's full of ideas for remote learning, plus simplified activities with a focus on wellbeing and sustainability. I really enjoyed creating short videos to be included in this collection and I feel proud that so many schools and services have benefited from using this collection over the past six months. Despite 2020 being such a different year, I know that the collection will still be valuable for our educators when planning classes for 2021 and beyond!
Name: Josie Charles
What is your role at the Foundation? Support & Delivery Manager. I have been around the Foundation for many years: I’ve delivered professional development across Australia, met many educators, visited many schools and seen their kitchen garden programs in action. I learnt a lot during those years I travelled extensively. Now I manage the Support & Delivery team, so I’m not delivering professional development as much, but I still chat with all the many people involved on the ground.
What is your Spirit Kitchen or Garden Tool and why? It has always been the garden shed. I have many tools, and store plenty of information and advice that is called on daily, and I’m happy to share.
What is your favourite resource or recipe on the Shared Table? Right now, the recipe for ricotta and spinach gnocchi. This is such good comfort food – it’s easy to make and I swap in any greens I have left in my fridge or growing in my garden.
Name: Marcelle Coakley
What is your role at the Foundation? Membership Coordinator. I help schools and early years services become kitchen garden members, and I work with other organisations and networks to share news and updates, like the recent changes to our membership packages. I also get to hang out with Jess, Suzie, Steph and Sam from the Support & Delivery team almost every day. I have dipped in and out of the Foundation for 10 years and it’s always welcoming and exciting: coming back to work with one of my original teammates, Josie, is why the Foundation feels like coming home to my family.
What is your Spirit Kitchen or Garden Tool and why? Right now I would choose my kitchen mixer, which seems to be on the go all the time lately. We have a few birthdays in winter and my dad has a loaded orange tree, so I really love baking my favourite sticky orange cake for all the special people in my life.
What is your favourite resource or recipe on the Shared Table? It’s really hard to pick just one or two, but, for gardening, I would choose the wicking box resources. I lived in the Pilbara region for many years and it was always an effort to keep up with watering, so a wicking bed would be one of my best tips for dry climates. As for a recipe, I would go with the marinated mullet with Mexican slaw. I believe it’s important to support sustainable seafood and the humble mullet, or Fremantle sardine, is one of the best examples here in Western Australia, where I live. They are so good wrapped in a home-made tortilla, with a seasonal slaw and a good coating of green sauce. Plus, they are super cheap and easy to find.
Name: Sam George
What is your role at the Foundation?
Support & Delivery Officer
What is your Spirit Kitchen or Garden Tool and why? I am the silicon spatula: I have a flexible head, but a firm handle on things. I make sure everything is scraped clean, with nothing left behind, and I like to make sure things are evenly distributed.
What is your favourite resource or recipe on the Shared Table? There are so many great resources to choose from, so I have picked one of the first resources I used as a Kitchen Specialist at North Melbourne Primary School. This template for a knife licence is a beautiful printout that I gave every student after they completed knife training in the program. On completion of training, the student and I would sign the licence and with a handshake we would express a mutual trust of each other in our kitchen space. The students would take the responsibility of knife use and safety seriously, and felt proud of their licences.
Name: Steph McLeod
What is your role at the Foundation? Support & Delivery Officer. I’m usually travelling around our beautiful country running professional development sessions for the amazing educators who are on the ground in schools and services, putting our program philosophy into action. I never tire of meeting the people in our kitchen garden community. Currently I’m supporting our community from home, running webinars and collating resources to assist our educators in delivering pleasurable food education.
What is your Spirit Kitchen or Garden Tool and why? My spirit kitchen tool is the colander. My teamies know how much I like things to be orderly! I’m a sucker for structure and clear procedure. I like to sift through things and hold on to what’s important, letting all the rest wash away, so therefore I am the colander!
What is your favourite resource or recipe on the Shared Table? My favourite resource is the Shared Table! Please don’t make me pick just one!
Name: Suzie Wilton
What is your role at the Foundation? Delivery Officer. My role usually means delivering professional development sessions to our kitchen garden community all around Australia. Currently, while working from home in Melbourne, I am working with the team to develop our webinars and resources to support educators.
What is your Spirit Kitchen or Garden Tool and why? I am the whisk! I like to bring bubbly-ness and energy to whatever I’m doing, I like working with my hands and I’m not afraid of a bit of hard work.
What is your favourite resource or recipe on the Shared Table? I love spending time on the Shared Table, so I think my favourite resource changes all the time! Right now, I would say it’s the split broad bean falafel recipe, as I’m really looking forward to experimenting with swapping fresh broad beans for the dried ones this spring.
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