The Victoria University (VU) Cooking, Healthy Eating, & Wellbeing Program, otherwise known as the CHEW program, aims to help people build their knowledge, skills, and confidence in making healthy food choices.

Structured around the Australian Dietary Guidelines, the content of our four-week program is tailored to the needs of individual groups. Each session has an interactive education workshop, a cooking session related to topic of the day, and a group meal where everyone can enjoy the food they have prepared.. 

About the program

The VU CHEW program partners with local community services in the West of Melbourne and beyond.

A key aim of the CHEW program is to support people to make healthier choices around food. We particularly want to support people from vulnerable and disadvantaged groups.

It is a 4 week group program that has one session per week.

The program is facilitated by final year VU undergraduate nutrition students supervised by VU staff who are dietitians and nutritionists.

A dietitian* is someone who studied nutrition and nutrition science who is qualified to provide nutrition advice to individuals and groups to promote healthy and prevent and treat illness.

*Definition of dietitian.

Each session we can have:

  • up to 15 participants (ideally more than 10)
  • 1-3 support workers (as needed)
  • 3-5 nutrition students
  • 2 Victoria University staff, who are dietitians/nutritionists.

Three dishes are cooked in each session. It is safe to say that you won’t go hungry!

Some of the things we have cooked in the past include pita pizza, bean burritos, and fruit crumble.

Each session will take approx. 4 hours

  • 9:45am: Arrival
  • 10am: Set up, COVID check-in/screening.
  • 10.15am: overview of nutrition topic and activities
  • 11.30am: Kitchen session and eating
  • 1.15pm: Session recap and wrap up.

We expect to be finished and ready to leave by 2pm. The start and end time are flexible.


The program runs out of our Community Kitchen at our Werribee Campus.

The address is: 235 Hoppers Lane, Werribee, 3030, VIC. The community kitchen is in building 12 at Gate 1 (closest to the Mercy Hospital).

The program costs $20 per person ($5 per person per session).


Information for participants

There is an agreement between VU and your organisation which needs to be signed and returned prior to sessions commencing.

An information form from each participant will also need to be completed and returned.


You must wear closed toe shoes.

Also remember to bring:

  • a mask to use in cases where we cannot social distance  
  • your drink bottle
  • any medications or things you might need on the day.

The CHEW program will only run in person when it is covid-safe to do so. Our priority is the health and safety of our visitors, students and staff and we need your help. Each time you attend campus the requirement is to:

  • Adhere to Government-mandated vaccination requirements
  • Carry a face mask at all times (unless a lawful exemption applies)
  • Maintain hygiene and social distancing
  • Stay at home and get tested if you are experiencing COVID-like symptoms.

Contact us

If you'd like more information, or want to participate please contact:

Monica Wellington, Community Partner Coordinator

Email: [email protected].