JEFFERSON AWARD: Teaching children through gardens and meals - WDRB 41 Louisville News

JEFFERSON AWARD: Teaching children through gardens and meals

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A Louisville volunteer is changing children's lives one vegetable and cooking lesson at a time.

WDRB's Sterling Riggs had the opportunity to surprise our new recipient with a Jefferson Award! 

"Thank you. Thank you very much. I love doing it with the kids. Thank you, I'm totally blown away," said Ellis.

Leslie Ellis teaches children living in Louisville's urban neighborhoods how to grow a garden and use fresh vegetables to cook healthy meals. She's been doing it for the past 21 years. It's part of the Seed to Table program at The Cabbage Patch. The kids she mentors live in a part of town where fresh produce is limited.

In her career before retirement, she was a food writer, so she is uniquely qualified to run the program. She uses her time with the children to impart lessons on nutrition, kitchen safety and math and measurements. A recipe is not just a recipe to her; it is a tool for teaching skills like problem solving, following directions, planning, fractions, multiplication and more.

"I fell in love doing it 20 years ago. I get very attached to these kids. I feed off their energy and I believe in the program," said Ellis.

About the Jefferson Awards

The Jefferson Awards initiative, sometimes called "The Nobel Peace Prize for Volunteerism," was pioneered over 40 years ago. The Jefferson Awards recognize volunteers who transform lives and strengthen communities through dedication and service. WDRB is proud to bring the Jefferson Awards to Louisville.

To nominate an individual or group for a Jefferson Award, CLICK HERE.

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