How ‘Men Who Cook’ helps kids

COVINGTON, LA — It was a perfect evening as far as the weather and view went, and the benefit to the community was even better.

Sunday evening, hundreds of people gathered on the third floor, open-air rooftop of the parking garage at the Saint Tammany Parish Justice Center for the Men Can Cook event.

The event is a fundraiser for the Children’s Advocacy Center/Hope House, a North Shore group that works to prevent child abuse in the area.

Teams of cooks, headed by elected officials and other community leaders, each provided a unique dish for patrons to sample.

One side of the rooftop was lined with tables where patrons could sample all of the entries.  The cooking teams also compete for tip money, all of which is donated to the cause.

The Children’s Advocacy Center/Hope House helped nearly 300 kids last year who were the victims of physical or sexual abuse.  The group provides all kinds of services including trauma-focused therapy, family advocacy, forensic interviewing and safety planning.  All of the services are provided free of charge.

The event also included a silent auction with items ranging from original art work to sports memorabilia.

Tickets were available in advance and at the door.  Going into Sunday night’s fundraiser, the group had already raised well over $20,000 for the cause.