In 2015 the Jamie’s Ministry of Food program was delivered in an Indigenous community for the first time. Indigenous Australians experience a higher burden of chronic disease (over 70% of Indigenous Queenslanders are overweight or obese), lower life expectancy and far worse health outcomes than non-Indigenous Australians. This Indigenous pilot, developed in consultation with community elders, was a step forward in delivering the Jamie’s Ministry of Food program to where it’s needed most.
Cherbourg is Queensland’s third largest Aboriginal community. With a SEIFA index of 555.7 it is the second most disadvantaged community in the State. Located in South East Queensland, Cherbourg is located within Wakka Wakka tribal boundaries and bordering onto Gubbi Gubbi (Kabi Kabi) territory to the east.
The Good Foundation met with key local community organisations, as part of the planning process to discuss the program and determine how to adapt it to local needs.
The program was adjusted slightly in its delivery, fee and recipe selection. Recipes were adapted to accommodate “batch cooking” for large families, diabetics, healthy dessert options, ingredient substitution with traditional foods and “bush tucker” and ingredient accessibility. Consultation with the community also uncovered a love of spicy food.
There were a number of notable community group experiences where participants really connected with the program. These included a women’s group that offered a cross cultural experience for the Mobile Kitchen team as the participants shared their own recipes with the trainers and spent part of each class engaged in discussions on recipe modification and how traditional foods could be incorporated into each recipe.