Cooking healthy without breaking the bank

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT)-Jackson County organizations are working together to meet the needs of the public they serve.

A "Cooking and More" class is taking place in Newport.

This program was created by the Jackson County Wellness Coalition, Cooperative Extension Office and Health Department.

The purpose is to help people learn different ways to save money.

Helen Bullard with the Jackson County Wellness Coalition says while Tuesday's program was about preparing a healthy meal cheap, that's not the only thing the class teaches.

"It had come to our attention," Bullard said. "As we had tried to develop our county wellness coalition, that perhaps some of our county residents might could use a little additional help in meal planning and budgeting and perhaps some basic cooking and sewing skills and so we decided to try to develop a program last year."

In January, the program kicked off with couponing and other aspects of budgeting.

Since that time, the group has tackled a number of other issues.

Administrator with the Jackson County Health Unit, Anissa Foushee, says those who attend seem to get a lot out of the classes.

"The response has been excellent," Foushee said. "The ones that have come have really enjoyed it. They've talked about how much they've learned. We've had some wonderful speakers that have given us a lot of great information."

Nell Furrow of Newport has been attending the classes for a while.

Furrow says she's learned a lot.

"We've had speakers from the college here on agriculture and how to grow plants and flowers and things like that. I think any gathering where you might learn something will be good for anyone of all ages."

Foushee says no matter what information the class is covering, there's something for everyone to learn.

"You'll learn a fun way to cook healthy that's not going to cost a lot of money is our main goal," Foushee said. "We want to show people that it does not have to be expensive to cook healthy. And so they can use items that they already have in your kitchen to make good, healthy meals and have a lot of fun while you're here."

The class meets the third Tuesday of each month at the First United Methodist Church from 12:30 to 2:00pm.

They are open to the public.

For more information about the Cooking and More class, call the Jackson County Extension Office at (870) 523-7450.

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