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Boys & Girls Club kids learn the art of preserving, canning food

Yesterday, kids at the Boys and Girls Club took a break from technology to learn an old tradition: canning.

“Sometimes they go and purchase things at the store, and they’re not aware of its origins or where it came from. So, we’re trying to educate them,” said Elinore Hersey, a member of the Omicron Beta Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Sorority, who hosted the event along with the Winston County Self Help Cooperative.

Students learned how to manage their resources as well as a few survival skills by creating canned strawberry jam.

“It’s very important that we teach the next generation, the ones who are going to inherit the land and inherit our homes, the practical use of their natural resources,” said Frank Taylor, president of WCSHC.

Rosie Harris, a member of WCSHC, instructed the workshop and described the process of creating the jam.

We get through the strawberries. We prepare them by cutting the stems and washing them. We put our strawberry pulp in a boiler and add SurGel. You make sure you sterilize your jars. You put them in hot water to kill all the germs and bacteria so you won’t get food poisoning. After that, you’re ready to take them out and this is the finished product.’

Canning may be considered a lost art. But with concerns about healthy eating and what to do when disaster strikes, it might be making a comeback.

“When you learn to can, you learn to provide good, quality food for your family. You know what they’re getting. When you raise it yourself, you know how it’s raised,” said Harris.

After the workshop, each child got to take home their own special-made jar of strawberry jam.


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