“Older people deserve the very best food. Enticing, delicious meals that uplift and bring joy” – Maggie Beer
Maggie Beer is on a mission to improve the food quality in aged care facilities around the country through her Maggie Beer Foundation (MBF). Her belief is that older Australians have the right to the pleasure of sufficient, tasty, nutritious and safe food which respects cultural, religious and dietary requirements, which is offered in a conducive environment, and which supports wellbeing and enjoyment of life.
In an ongoing effort to improve food and nutrition across aged care, the MBF has launched an online training program designed to upskill cooks and chefs in the sector.
Called Aged Care Skills for Cooks and Chefs, the education program is specifically geared toward aged care kitchens. “There’s virtually no specialised training for the complex arena of cooks and chefs in aged care,” said Maggie Beer.
The findings of the aged care royal commission – and discussions at MBF’s national congress in February 2021 – identified that the training of cooks and chefs in aged care is a large factor in the quality of meals served, said Ms Beer.
Many of the cooks and chefs currently in aged care have no formal training in hospitality and are expected to learn on the job. To remedy this, MBF has been running face-to-face training courses since its inception in 2014.
This initiative builds upon other programs that the Foundation has piloted, including a Wellbeing Gardens Program launched in 2017, in which grants were provided to Aged Care homes to support them in implementing or improving existing Wellbeing Gardens. Each home embraced the opportunity, involving residents, staff, and in some cases, local TAFE students in the design and building of these spaces.
We fully support and applaud Maggie’s tireless efforts. Go Maggie!
To find out more visit https://maggiebeerfoundation.org.au.