Endowment payout supports youth cooking classes


Each year, payouts from endowment funds held by the Dyersville Area Community Foundation support organizations’ missions and improve quality of life in our community. The 2022 distribution from the Jeanne M. Coppola Endowment for Education supported Kids Can Cook, a new program at the James Kennedy Public Library. 

The program starts up this month with weekly after-school sessions, allowing children ages 9 to 12 to learn about cooking in a safe and fun environment. “Learning to cook is an important life skill that also teaches science, math, reading and organized thinking,” says Kim Benton-Hermsen, youth services librarian. “Many kids today are on their own for at least one meal a day and often resort to quick foods that don’t promote health and fitness. This project will teach children how to cook healthy, satisfying meals while increasing their confidence, independence and sense of self-worth with each meal they make.”

Cooking, like any skill, needs to be taught and practiced. Being able to follow recipes and make nutritious meals from scratch, learning basics like how to boil water, use knives and understand nutrition are vital skills for healthy living. Funding from the endowment payout will be used primarily to purchase tools, appliances, equipment, storage and supplies needed to create a “learning kitchen,” building the library’s capacity to offer cooking classes in the future. 

To sign up for Kids Can Cook, visit the library, call 563-875-8912, or email kbenton@dyersville.lib.ia.us.

The Jeanne M. Coppola Endowment for Education was started to meet educational needs in the Dyersville area, allowing educators flexible spending to meet current needs. The Community Foundation holds funds for many nonprofits as well as individuals and families with charitable goals. In 2022, the Foundation’s family of funds made nearly $100,000 available to community projects in the Dyersville area.

“The Foundation connects donors with the greatest needs in our community,” says Executive Director Michelle Grover. “We offer many opportunities to improve quality of life by addressing an array of local issues.” To learn more about how you can establish a fund or make a gift that impacts your community, contact Grover at 319-269-6432 or email dacf@dbqfoundation.org.