The Slow Food UW annual Spring Gala is here, which means great food with awesome people for a heartwarming cause!
All of the proceeds from the 2020 Spring Gala will go towards funding our South Madison Projects, which work to engage with youth in the Madison community by helping to foster their relationship with food through cooking, nutrition education, and gardening activities.
Learn more about South Madison here!
South Madison Testimonials
Slow Food has been such a meaningful part of both our college experiences. Currently, we serve as interns at Boys and Girls Club of Dane County doing Teen Cooking Night, a program designed to introduce new foods and cooking techniques to teens. We entered into this program with grand visions of all the vegetables we would cook and how the teens would learn to love all the healthy food we would bring them. The first few weeks were disappointing when the teens were reluctant to participate and had no interest in eating the finished products. We began reflecting, thinking more deeply about Slow Food’s mission, realizing that we were not supporting the teens as effectively as we could be. Entering into their space with our own agenda and beliefs about food without taking their input and past experiences into consideration was bound to fail. To bridge this gap, we stopped focusing so much on maximizing the health of the meal and decided that it was more important that we learn how to relate to this diverse group of teenagers and simply cook a homemade meal they were interested in. We asked them what they wanted to make and listened. Our new, reworked objective was to introduce them to varied ethnic cuisines and to show them how to make homemade dishes instead of eating ready-prepped or fast food. After making this switch, there has been a marked change in our experience—more teens come every week, normally everyone at least tries it, and often they even report liking it! Making our mission match their needs/wants is something that we believe has served us all better. This whole process has taught us an incredible amount about respect, patience, cultural competency, communication, and how to look at what a population you are serving would benefit from first, instead of having a predetermined, inflexible agenda. We are both so grateful for all of the wonderful moments and opportunities Slow Food UW has given us over the past few years. Thank you for supporting us and our community!Carly Wilson and Melaney Van Spankeren – teen cooking night interns
There’s a steep learning curve to working with the teens in the Odyssey Project. Connecting with them over (and beyond) food not only brightens my day; it also shows me the significant ways I am still ignorant about the lives of those around me. There’s still a long way to go, but I’ve definitely grown a lot through this work.Jenny Steinberg – odyssey intern