Black Women for Wellness' Sisters in Motion program hosts healthy cooking classes that include professionally guided, educational discussions and peer support. The program works to reduce the occurence of nutrition related health risks and increase well-being through instruction on healthy cooking, preventive lifestyle practices, eating habits and physical activity.
“Simple is sustainable.”
Kitchen Divas began as a pilot program for women to participate in healthy cooking classes with professionally guided culinary instruction, discussion and peer support.
The program evolved into comprehensive curriculum that helps individuals of all ages increase their health and well-being through nutritional knowledge, healthy dietary habits, and preventive lifestyle practices.
Kitchen Divas program objectives include:
Enhance knowledge, attitudes and behavior about cardiovascular, heart, and breast health and cancer risk reduction.
Share healthful food preparation knowledge and provide education in nutritional food purchase and cooking practices.
Improve nutrition by increasing fruits, vegetable and fiber and decreasing fats and preserved meats.
With an enhanced knowledge of culturally based cooking, attitudes and behavior about cardiovascular, heart, and breast health and cancer risk reduction, we can heal our communities.
Kitchen Divas food demonstrations, workshops, health education and advocacy support and encourage lifestyle change via nutrition and exercise.
The most often asked question about Kitchen Divas – is it for vegetarians? While we are not trying to convert folks to being a vegetarian, we are focused on increasing the fruits and vegetables in our diets. So classes and demonstrations welcomes vegetarians and focuses on plant-based meal preparation.
At the end of the cooking experience, participants will have participated in the preparation of and sampled food to create a menu for one complete meal.
Meet Our Chefs
Brisa is a food and beauty influencer who loves making dishes inspired by her restaurant adventures in East LA. Her love for food blossomed in her grandma’s kitchen as a child. Those moments of being by grandma’s side, inspired her to pursue a career in culinary arts. Brisa also grew up watching Emeril Lagasse and Rachel Ray on Food Network, which left her hungry for more. By 2012, Brisa joined a culinary club, where she catered events and ran a café for teachers. She also joined Future Homemakers of America, where she competed and won state-wide menu planning, table display, and hospitality competitions. By joining Black Women for Wellness and through creating her own cooking videos, Brisa aims to spark people’s love of food, just as it was ignited in her, many years ago.
Ośunkoya became inspired by the art of food at a young age as she was surrounded by a big family that loved to gather and eat. Though she experienced a lot of beauty around food in her childhood, she also struggled greatly with an eating disorder. Her private business, Sun Belly, was born out of her overcoming that disorder and creating a healthier and more loving relationship with her food. She now draws her culinary inspiration from generations of healing traditions within West Indian, Latin, and Southern cuisines. From the farmers markets with her family as a girl, to her current kitchen cooking nonstop with friends, food is is her way of reconnecting to the colorful cultures that dressed her childhood.
Through cooking classes, dinner parties, festivals and beyond, she’s collaborated with urban gardens, healthy local restaurants, grassroots organizations and more to do her part in spreading health education and access to healthy food.
Chef Angela Bowie
A proud native of Oakland, California, Angela Bowie found her love for food at an early age. Angela attended the first elementary school in the United States to launch an edible garden. This initiative was headed by American chef, Alice Waters, who is known for cooking with organic and locally grown foods. This idea of using fresh foods has heavily influenced Angela’s cooking style and is immediately noticed by her clients.
Although, cooking is second nature to Angela, she felt is was important to back her passion with the proper education. Angela has a B.S. in Food Science/Nutrition from California State Northridge, and an Associates degree in Culinary Arts from the Art Institute Hollywood.
Angela is currently a chef at UCLA Bruin Plate, a four star certified green restaurant. The nutritionally-minded chef also caters in the Los Angeles area, from intimate gatherings to celebrity events . Angela is often acknowledged for her flavorful twists on traditional entrees, savory appetizers, and delicious desserts. Highly appreciated for the detail and care she puts into her food, Angela continues to set the bar for herself higher to exceed each client's expectations. Through her participation with Kitchen Diva’s, she hopes to bring her twist and nutritional insights to the community as she shows how doesn’t have to substitute flavor for nutrition.
Chef Carmen Karlsgodt
Carmen Karlsgodt is the creator of health food blog and Instagram account, Healthy Con Gusto, where she shares clean recipes and a simple message: Eat Better, Not Less. She specializes in plant based, anti inflammatory menus, and identifying food intolerances or unknown allergies. Her mission is to teach our community to check their labels and substitute unhealthy ingredients used in family recipes, without losing the gusto.
Carmen was born in Lima, Peru and moved to California she was 14 years old. She graduated from UCLA with a B.A in Sociology and Cultural Anthropology. She attended UCSB for her M.A in Spanish Language, Linguistics and Cultural Studies. She has been in education her whole adult life, teaching French and Spanish for over 15 years. She transitioned into health education and has been working with Black Women for Wellness through their Kitchen Divas program, bringing healthy recipes to underserved communities.
Her passion comes from healing herself by using food as medicine, and after learning what causes inflammation in our bodies, she shares it with everyone she meets. She is also an Independent Consultant with Arbonne International, because it aligns with her message of health from the inside out. She also works with the Susan G. Komen Foundation in the Circle of Promise, which emphasizes early breast cancer detection and prevention. Furthermore, she is an educator for the American Heart Association teaching people how to live a healthier lifestyle on a budget.