A pioneering cookery course aimed at aiding those who have suffered bereavement has been launched.
It is being offered by the new Grief Matters Highland initiative run by Highland Hospice.
The Cooking in Company course is to bring together those who are suffering from grief in a bid to reinstate joy in cooking and sharing food in company.
Una Smale, of Highland Hospice’s counselling and bereavement services team, said: “Bereavement can impact a person’s life in many ways, and cooking is one of them.
“Perhaps your loved one was the better cook or maybe you have just lost your appetite and interest because cooking for one is hard and may no longer be a social activity for you.
“This course aims to reintroduce cookery as something you might come to enjoy, as well as providing an opportunity to meet others who have also experienced bereavement.”
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The course is due to last six weeks and will be led by experienced chef and cookery lecturer Suarav Kumar of Inverness College UHI.
Grief Matters Highland is an initiative launched by the Highland Hospice, Crocus Group, Curse Bereavement Care Scotland and NHS Highland’s Chaplaincy Services with the shared aim of widening access and choice in bereavement care services.
The scheme is open to adults, children and young people in the Highlands, regardless of their age, mobility, location or cause of death of loved ones.
The Cooking in Company sessions begin on Wednesday, April 24, with support to be offered by members of the Highland Hospice’s Counselling and Bereavement Services Team.
From week two, group members will influence the choice of dish the group is to prepare, with an opportunity to gather to enjoy the meal together after the conclusion of the class.
Georgina Parker, director of external relations at Inverness College UHI, said: “Along with Bidfood, we are delighted to support Highland Hospice and sponsor this cookery course.
“I hope it makes a real different to people who have experienced loss, and they benefit from this social activity but also the skills our Professional Cookery lecturer Saurav can share.”
Other initiatives are currently being put forward by the hospice’s bereavement support services through Grief Matters Highland, including Taking Steps, a support walking group which meets in Inverness on the first and third Tuesday of each month.
A Time to Remember memorial event is also being led by the hospice chaplain, with upcoming events to take place in Inverness, Kyle, Fort William and Wick and are open to anyone who has suffered a recent bereavement.