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Launched in 2006 by Rachael Ray, Yum-o!® is a nonprofit organization that empowers kids and their families to develop healthy relationships with food and cooking by teaching families to cook, feeding hungry kids and funding cooking education and scholarships.
Through our three core work areas of Cook, Feed and Fund, Yum-o! educates kids and their families about food and cooking by offering an interactive website that enables young cooks to get started in the kitchen and try out family-friendly recipes; teams up with partner organizations to feed hungry children; and funds innovative cooking programs in schools and educational opportunities for kids who are interested in pursuing careers in the restaurant and foodservice industry.
COOK – Educating kids and their families about food and cooking
Yum-o! educates kids and their families about food and cooking, enabling them to get started in the kitchen while making meals that are easy, healthy, affordable and delicious. The Yum-o! website (www.yum-o.org) is the central place where Yum-o! provides tools and resources for young cooks, such as recipes and tips for the kitchen. The How Cool Is That? section on the website showcases innovative programs and organizations in schools and communities across the country, while the Your Stories section offers website visitors the opportunity to share how they spend time together cooking and eating.
FEED – Feeding hungry American kids
Despite living in the world's richest country, a startling number of Americans go hungry every year. According to a study completed by the UDSA in 2006, the rate of food insecurity for American households in 2005 was 11%, which means that more than 35 million people did not have access to enough food to meet their basic needs. Nearly 13 million of these people were children – that's almost 1 in 5 kids! These food insecure and hungry kids can be found in urban and rural areas in all geographic regions of the country. They are raised in dual and single parent homes and represent all races and ethnicities.
Hunger in America has been, and continues to be, a real problem for a significant part of our population. Therefore, Yum-o! is making the fight against hunger a part of our mission by partnering with organizations such as Share Our Strength® (SOS) in support of their leading priority: ending childhood hunger in America. Yum-o! also works with organizations throughout the country to raise awareness about and contribute to special projects that address this issue.
Watch Share Our Strength: Strength in Numbers, a video illustrating the magnitude of childhood hunger in America.
FUND – Funding cooking education and scholarships
Yum-o! recognizes the wide variety of restaurant and foodservice industry opportunities for young people making career choices today. Yum-o! helps kids reach their food-related career goals by funding scholarships and recognizing public schools that are offering food or nutrition programs that incorporate healthy choices. We accomplish this through our partnerships with the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation and the Alliance for a Healthier Generation.
Learn more about our efforts in each area.
Today's kids and their families are pressed for time. Many don't know how to cook or assemble basic meals or are simply too busy and tired to spend much time in the kitchen. In addition, easy access to inexpensive food with low nutritional value has caused eating habits to deteriorate. Fortunately, most kids and parents are eager to make better food choices if given the necessary tools.
"Yum-o!" is the sound you make when you eat something really delicious. It is kind of a combination of "Yummy!" and "Oh wow!" You can't help but smile when you say it because it's such a fun word to say. A big part of the Yum-o! organization is about making cooking and eating something that makes people happy. Food should be delicious, fun and put a smile on your face.
Eating habits are formed at a young age and, if kids are given opportunities and knowledge, they will make better food choices. Yum-o! envisions a country where all kids experience the joys of cooking and eating nourishing food.
We hope you'll enjoy reading a message from Rachael Ray about growing up in the kitchen and her inspiration and vision for Yum-o!
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