Kitchen Connections is JLO’s signature program
In the 2018-2019 League year, JLO embarked on a process of exploration to determine its area of focus. After
dozens of service-learning experiences, and soliciting input from every active League member and Sustainer,
we collectively landed on Hunger & Food Access as JLO’s area of focus for community impact efforts.
Kitchen Connections fills a unique gap in Omaha’s food-access ecosystem.
Through the program, League volunteers connect with young adults to act as Food Mentors.
They meet once a month, teaching them a new healthy recipe, talking, laughing, and enjoying
the shared connection of food. We don’t go wide. We go deep.
Kitchen Connections isn’t about providing service to everyone. It’s about changing the trajectory of one family at a
time by making a genuine connection. JLO volunteers like you introduce the joy of home cooking, the value of healthy
eating, and provide the know-how and equipment to sustain making healthy food a permanent part of their lives.
Kitchen Connections works!
The first year of Kitchen Connections saw significant impact in the lives of the young people we
served. One family at a time, here’s what we saw in our pre- and post-mentorship surveys:
● Feel their meals are 2x more healthy
than when they started
● 17% more confident shopping for food
● 47% more confident preparing meals for themselves
● 56% more confident storing food
● 80% more equipped to prepare healthy meals at home
● Some decrease in fast food
● 80% increase in how healthy they
perceived their meals to be
● 140% more confident shopping for food
● 114% more confident preparing meals for themselves
● 175% more confident storing food
● 180% more equipped to prepare healthy meals at home
● Increase in how often they cooked their own meals
● Decrease in fast food
Kitchen Connections Partners
JLO has partnered with three core organizations
in Omaha to work with their young people
and use their space for cooking sessions.
- PROJECT EVERLAST
This program of Nebraska Children and
Families Foundation focuses on equipping
young adults aging out of foster care with the
connections, skills and resources they need
to launch successful, independent lives.
- CHILD SAVING INSTITUTE
CSI’s Independent Living Skills program
provides young adults the skills they need to
transition from foster care to independence.
- COMPLETELY KIDS
In addition to providing the cooking space
for Kitchen Connections, Completely Kids
also provides independent life skills classes
for the young adults that it serves.