Chefs Make Change: Cat Cora for Chefs for Humanity
Modeled after Doctors Without Borders, Chefs for Humanity brings culinary professionals and educators together with both US and global organizations to provide nutrition education, hunger relief and emergency and humanitarian aid around the world. chefsforhumanity.org.
The Challenge “What I don’t think people understand yet is that chefs and other culinary professionals are just so important in emergency feeding relief. Untrained people don’t know how to keep food sanitary, and the last thing you want in a crisis is to have a food-borne illness break out. Having an amateur cook trying to feed 5,000 people a day is like saying, ‘I’m going to be on a Doctors Without Borders team, but I’m not a doctor.’ ”
What Keeps Her Going “We raise money to help feed children in schools and orphanages. When we go to these places with the World Food Program to drop off rice and beans and supplies, these little babies walk up to us and hold their arms out, because they just want somebody.”
Money Matters “We are raising money not only through donations but also through my food products and merchandise—some of the proceeds go to Chefs for Humanity. I also do local fund-raisers for emergency-response teams, such as police departments, fire departments, EMTs. I did a lot of fund-raising on the Gulf Coast after Katrina, and I also cooked every day for all those people in shelters.”
What’s Next “Every public school in the country should have a nutrition-education curriculum. We’re creating a pilot program at my son’s school. We are looking to create a replicable model that can help bring good nutrition to all children.”
Her Recipes for F&W “I love braises this time of year—whether an African stew or a fresh California-style stew. And quinoa is such a great grain; it’s so healthy and easy to make.”