Our team

From two grown-ups and two kids back in 2011 we are now a collective of leaders, volunteers, freelancers and of course many enthusiastic session attendees of all ages! We are from different backgrounds and have different perspectives, but we all believe in the power of from-scratch, fun, family cooking.

If you’d like to be part of this, check out our training programme and job and volunteering opportunities.

Hub Coordinators

Aneta

I was invited to one of the first sessions almost 10 years ago and stayed to this day 😉
What do I get out of it? Passion and the opportunity to expand my skills and feel happy and seen. I work with a great team of wonderful inspirational people, helping my family and my local community creating something together for fun, food and environment, and ultimately a better future.

Learn more about the South East London hub

Alice

I first came across Kids Kitchen at the Toy Library, my son was two and we had just moved to Walthamstow and were doing any toddler class going (hands up who can relate!). I always loved food and was determined to pass on my love for cooking to my son so I decided to keep in touch with Kids Kitchen. A few months later their training course come up and I thought, why not?

What do you do?
I started as a session leader and become a co-ordinator in the middle of the pandemic so my duties have been ever changing. In short I make Kids Kitchen stuff happen in East London, with the help and support of the rest of the fantastic team. Hopefully face to face soon but virtually so far with online Playgroups and Ingredients bags.

What do you get out of it?
I’ve have learned so much in the last couple of years working with Kids Kitchen about community enterprise, sustainability and child development. I have felt more actively connected to my community and I gained a sense of purpose. The team has also been a great support to me and my family during this impossibly difficult last year.

Learn more about the East London hub.

Kate

I am a Hub Coordinator, though I am currently on maternity leave expecting baby number 3! Normally, I run sessions in and around Hereford and Leominster and oversee the other activities we do as a Hub – which over lockdown has included training up two new Session Leaders, distributing Ingredients Bags and filming some of our Recipe Activity Videos with other team members, as well as running some of our online cookalong sessions and Virtual Playgroup. I can’t wait to get back to ‘normal’ sessions and connecting with local families again though!

What do you get out of it:
I love it! I enjoy bringing families and communities together and encouraging children to get stuck in with the cooking as well as making new friends! I love showing people how easy and enjoyable it is to get children involved in the kitchen and the benefits of cooking together. I consider myself really lucky to have a job that allows such great flexibility around my own young family – anyone who has ever joined me in a session either in real life or online will know my children, in particular my daughter, who is every bit the Session Leader too! I have also really enjoyed seeing the Herefordshire hub grow over the past couple of years, despite very challenging circumstances and I am excited to see what the future holds for Kids Kitchen in Herefordshire.

Learn more about the Herefordshire hub.

Being part of this has been amazing for me and my family. It's a resource for education, work and leisure.

Aneta

Directors

Rebecca

Director

I support the work of our three area hubs with coordination, strategic direction, fundraising, finance and communications and lead on our core training programme.

Eva and I used to joke early-on about “when this gets big…” We really just started cooking with others and knew we had something good when people just wouldn’t let us stop!

Learn more about Rebecca.

Eva

Director

From creating the first seed of an idea in 2011 to now, Eva has driven and supported the look, feel and values of what we do. Her background is in fine art and she is now a designer and maker specialising in early years and play.

Learn more about Eva.

Session Leaders

Molly

Session Leader

With many years of teaching under her belt, Molly got involved through a post on a Facebook jobs page. She’s a session leader in Herefordshire but does whatever she can – including packing ingredients bags and checking emails!

“I love cooking so sharing that with people is lovely, and through lockdowns it’s given some much needed social interaction.”

Naseem

Session Leader

Through her grandchildren, Naseem found out about our sessions and has brought her years of Children’s Centre experience to us. We are trying not to keep her retirement too busy!

Sam

Session Leader

Being Covid unemployed, I was looking to a future doing something different but based on my experience. Getting involved with Kids Kitchen allowed me to see a way to combine my two loves, cooking and yoga! The Kids Kitchen team, are down-to-earth, open, encouraging and also very knowledgeable about children’s development, what’s important for that to thrive and how best to offer a fun engaging activity for the whole family.

Kay

Session Leader

After working in childcare and other caring sectors, Kay has come through our training programme to lead sessions in our Herefordshire hub.
 

Carmen

Session Leader

Carmen came along to a session in East London and has moved into both session leading and coordinating.

Nicola

Session Leader

After working in arts marketing for many years, Nicola wanted a change of direction, ideally combining her creativity, passion for cooking, and desire to work with kids. She couldn’t believe her luck when she discovered the Kids Kitchen online training programme and completed it in summer 2021.

She’s now a session leader in South-East London, as well as being involved in additional online projects as and when required.

“I love experimenting with food at home with my two-year-old daughter, trying out new, healthy vegan recipes and generally having fun with it.”

Kelda

Session Leader

How did you get involved?

I saw an advert in the OrganicLea Newsletter and applied to do the Kids Kitchen training.

What do you do?

I run cooking sessions for children and adults and share recipe and workshop ideas with the Kids Kitchen community.

What do you get out of it?

I really enjoy seeing children and parents who didn’t know they can cook together start to cook. It is great seeing people enjoy healthy and vegetarian food for the first time, and tell us they will go and make it at home.

Associates

Kemi

Project Support

How did you get involved?

A friend of mine linked Rebecca and I. I was originally meant to give my feedback on a job vacancy. Rebecca wanted someone that could relate/connect to particularly residents who face systemic social challenges such as poverty, racism, etc. I gave my feedback and said, actually, I don’t mind applying for the position. And the rest is history.

What do you do?

I started out being a community/participation worker but now I support different bespoke projects when we secure grants for them, such as ISLA project where we deliver to residents who would otherwise struggle to get fresh food. You will also see my face in most of our recipe videos just being silly, which is what I do best!😂.

What do you get out of it?

I absolutely LOVE being a part of Kids Kitchen. Such a simple, yet effective concept. Cook and play with your children. I already raised two kids who are now in their 20s , so I know how difficult it is as busy parents to think about different, healthy recipes. Kids Kitchen makes it easy for you to learn about different, healthy, simple to cook dishes and encourages you to cook with your children. In this day and age where we hardly get enough exercise, not to talk of obesity challenges, I get a lot of satisfaction being part of a collective that makes it easy to cook healthy meals with your kids and have fun while doing it.

Cat

Outreach and Publicity

How did you get involved?

I found out about Kids Kitchen when I met Aneta at a volunteering session, at Wild Cat Wilderness, in the September of lockdown. She introduced me to the free online family cooking sessions and although I love food, I’m not a natural in the kitchen, so I learnt some new skills in the sessions. My 2-year-old daughter now loves the weekly Virtual Playgrounds which she joins with her dad.

What do you do?

I’m part of the SE London team delivering a community outreach project in the London Borough of Lewisham, funded by the ISLA Foundation. This project is all about connecting families in our neighbourhoods through shared cooking experiences. We provide fresh food and easy from-scratch recipes to support families during these isolating times.

What do you get out of it?

I love working with Aneta and Kemi, who are both really inspiring so I’m learning a lot. The best thing about my job is speaking to the passionate organisations and individuals who have connected us with the families, and speaking to the families themselves. Kids Kitchen supported me in lockdown so it’s heart-warming hearing first-hand how much this project is reaching more parents to help them cope during the pandemic.

Jennie

Fundraising and Strategy

How did you get involved?

I came to Aneta’s sessions with my two kids and loved the low key feel. A lot of other toddler activities I tried I felt really awkward and at least one of my kids would go “off script”. Then I responded to a Facebook request from Kids Kitchen asking if anyone could help with fundraising. My involvement has grown since then.

What do you do?

I work on our applications to trust funders, housing associations and local councils – with input from the team on the ground. I write about what we want do, and say how much it will cost… then cross my fingers.

What do you get out of it?

I need to be at home with my kids most of the time while my partner works, and while I’ve had various employers since having becoming a mum, none have been as flexible as Kids Kitchen. I really feel my small contribution makes a difference.

Sarah

Enterprise Volunteer

How did you get involved?

I joined the training initially because I wanted to learn more about cooking with kids and was potentially interested in starting my own sessions. Instead I’ve started working with Kids Kitchen in other ways, starting out with festivals and it grew from there

What do you do with Kids Kitchen?

Lots of things! Logistics, festivals, communications…

What have you got out of it?

New skills, confidence to make changes to get “me” back after having kids – eg moving to a new town, I’ve made new friends and had some fun experiences that I’d never have been able to afford otherwise, eg Carfest South with my kids.

Louise

Volunteer Steering Team Member

Louise has a calm head when it comes to describing what we do and how we have impact. She also has a head for strategy and is not afraid to ask the difficult questions – so valuable!

How did you get involved?

I saw a post on social media and liked that Kids Kitchen was bring communities together through cooking and eating together.

What do you get out of it?

I love working with an organisation that is so agile and turns their ideas into reality.

Claire

Marketing Volunteer

How did you get involved?

I was introduced by Media Trust, an organisation that partners charities and social enterprises with volunteers from the UK’s media and creative industry. I was made redundant at the end of 2020 (thank you, Covid) so was looking for something to keep me motivated and challenged while putting my experience and skills to good use.

What do you do?

My expertise is in helping brands and businesses tell their stories in ways that make them interesting to their target audiences, and ultimately build and protect their reputation. I’ve been helping Kids Kitchen to develop how it describes itself and the impact of the work it does, and working on a marketing strategy to get its stories out to the right audiences in the right places.

What do you get out of it?

I’m looking for my next permanent role so I’m grateful to have the opportunity to use my brain again! There were a number of organisations that I could have volunteered with, but Kids Kitchen’s vision and values really popped for me. As a mum, I understand how vital it is for parents to be able to feel connected to local networks for support, advice and company, and I really admire Kids Kitchen’s drive to get people together around a shared love of food and cooking, while teaching valuable life skills along the way. It’s great to support this important work in my small way.

Karen C

Video Editing

After what felt like our thousandth pivot in 2020, we needed someone to support our videos who ‘got’ us. Karen has edited our chaos with such style and generosity!

Learn more about Karen.

Lynne

Graphic Design and Strategy

Lynne came along to Aneta’s sessions and has also made Kids Kitchen happen at festivals with her family. She now supports us with some very patient and epic design.

Learn more about Lynne.

Annie

Community Member

How did you get involved?

I was able to attend a free training session in London when I had my 1 year old with me as there was childcare alongside. It was great that this made it possible for me to be there and I loved how much sense it all made…the idea of cooking together but also the practical tips on how to make sessions work. Later I did more training online (on my phone, on my narrowboat, with my son either in a sling asleep on my back, or breastfeeding) That I could do both these trainings with my child with me and without needing a computer was invaluable.

What do you do?

I’m a community member of Kids Kitchen, based in Bradford on Avon in Wiltshire. Before the first lockdown Kids Kitchen helped me to get some funding and start running sessions near me. I also work for two organic growers so I was able to use local veg for the sessions which made me very happy! Since lockdown I’ve been involved in the online sessions when possible and have come to feel more connected to the rest of Kids Kitchen because of this. So that’s a good thing!

What do you get out of it?

I like that I feel I can offer something useful to other parents (both friends and new people) which connects us all and cheers us up! By the end of each session theres always a real sense that together we did it and it was fun.
I also get to realise that I am capable of organising something and doing it even with a toddler by my side which has really helped me get some confidence back after having children.

Jean

Treasurer

Jean runs her own business representing writers and as well as being a reliable and enthusiastic financial support is also great with words too!

Learn more about Jean.

Molly

Website

Molly built the website you are on right now! She helped us get clear on how the structure, look and flow of the site can help us tell the world about the joy of our cooking sessions, as well as advised on some behind-the-scenes processes and systems.

Learn more about Molly.