DYWA cooking grads proud of new skills
A total of 50 graduates, including 38 adults and 12 teens, successfully completed the 2nd Culinary Training Program spearheaded by the Department of Youth and Women's Affairs. The eight-week long program was held at the former Election Office Building in Utulei and was conducted by Maria Lemalu Masalosalo and Maria Peretiso.
DYWA Director Pa'u Taito Roy Ausage said the program was initially set up for young people as part of Youth Month in July but the response from middle aged men and women was so overwhelming that they decided to accept all the applications and divide the classes into two separate sessions.
Another cooking class is set to begin September 16 and registration is now open at the DYWA main office on the 2nd floor of the A.P. Lutali Executive Office Building in Utulei. The classes are free of charge and are not limited to youth and women, as men are also welcome to take part.
Pa'u said, "The importance of this training is in the area of skills development. It gives the participants something they can add to their lifetime success stories." In addition, "The women who participated in the program have not only learned a new skill, they have also increased their self esteem as they were able to socialize with other women and get to know each other. I noticed, towards the end of the program, that a bond amongst the women had formed."
Pa'u said some of these women, through the class, have found others they can vent to and use as a confidant to share their problems and issues with. "That is the goal of our office," he said. "To bring women and youth together to better themselves and elevate their self esteem, in addition to giving them moments like this to highlight their successes."
Pa'u extends his gratitude to the Department of Education for allowing them to use the old Election Office, which had been set aside for use by the DOE's Career and Guidance Counseling Division, to conduct the cooking training program.
Yesterday's graduation ceremony featured a cooking demonstration before certificates were handed out. See story for details in Friday's edition of Samoa News.