Have you thought about “mastery” as a good goal for 2017? The N.C. Cooperative Extension Service has a couple of programs coming up that can help you with that.
The Extension Master Food Volunteer program: OK, this is wonky stuff, but it’s a new program for anyone who wants to volunteer in a food program. It’s a 30-hour course that covers food systems, cooking and food safety. If you know the county’s Master Gardener program, it’s sort of like that for food.
To take it, volunteers have to commit to 30 hours of service in the local Family and Consumer Sciences program in the first year, but it also makes you a trained volunteer for all kinds of programs. It’s aimed at anyone interested in working with the local food system, but particularly retirees, college students looking for service hours and people who want to help with farmers markets and the like. There are a limited number of spots, and you have to apply and get accepted. There’s a $25 program fee and the application deadline is Jan. 20. Get the application at go.ncsu.edu/emfvapp.
The Extension Sustainable Living Series: This is a series of classes for people who want to increase their food literacy, gardening and cooking skills and work sustainable practices into their daily life. Think container gardening, boiling-water and pressure canning, hydroponics, pickling, raised-bed gardening, yogurt making and composting. There’s a separate list for online or live classes. The class cost ranges from $5 to $18, and some of the online classes are prerequisites. Those start Feb. 8, and the first live class (at 141 Armory Drive) starts May 24 with container gardening. Registration is open now at go.ncsu.edu/sls.