You’re the Chef (YTC) FAQ for Trained Leaders

Q. How do I know when my YTC leader training certificate expires? 

A. We no longer have a mandatory requirement of re-training every five years. However, because the YTC program training and materials are always being refreshed and revised, we will send you a notice 5 years after your original training date inviting you to take the training again to stay up to date.


Q. How do I become a certified safe food handler?

A. Visit the Southwestern Public Health website’s Food Handler Certification section https://www.swpublichealth.ca/clinics-classes-forms/classes/food-handler-certification for the easy steps that you can take to get your food handler certification.


Q. I have a lot of recipes that I’d like to try with my group.  How do I get them approved?

A. No problem!  We welcome that.  Since the YTC program is all about healthy food preparation that features vegetables and fruit, we do ask that your recipes meet the ‘Recipe selection criteria’ found in your leader manual.  Look at the features of the recipe that we’re looking for, and if your recipe looks good, please submit it to healthyeating@swpublichealth.ca  for review and approval.


Q. Where do I get the resources that are mentioned in the Leader’s Manual?

A. Please contact healthyeating@swpublichealth.ca to request copies of resources that you would like to use for your YTC program. We will do our best to fill your request.


Q. Who should I talk to if I’m having trouble understanding any of the information that is found in the manual?

A. Questions are good!  Please contact healthyeating@swpublichealth.ca with any and all questions.  We’re happy to help.


Q. Will the leader manual be updated occasionally?

A. Definitely!  We’ll be listening to your feedback ongoing and making changes to the manuals and recipes accordingly.  We’ll be adding to the recipes as we go along too.  Watch for the updates on the YTC portal.


Q. Who do I speak to if I find an error in the YTC leader’s manuals?

A. Please let us know at healthyeating@swpublichealth.ca.


Q. What should I do if the program isn’t being well attended?

A. The pilot YTC programs that we ran showed us that the best way to ensure attendance is to make reminder phone calls before each session.  If you don’t have time for that, when you’re going over the ground rules at the start of your series, remind the participants how important it is for them to let you know if they can’t make it, and supply them with a way to contact you.


Q. What do I do if someone in my group asks me a nutrition or food safety question that I don’t know the answer to?

A. For nutrition questions, guide the participant to contact UnlockFood.ca or to contact Telehealth Ontario to speak to a Registered Dietitian for free at 1 (866) 797-0000 .  For food safety questions, guide them to visit www.fightbac.org


Q. How do I handle someone who is disruptive to the rest of the group?

A. That can be a challenge.  Take a look at your leader’s manual under ‘Tips for Leaders’.  


Q. I’m having trouble getting funding to purchase the food needed for my program.  Do you have any suggestions?

A. We may have a few tricks up our sleeve to help you out with that.  Please contact us at healthyeating@swpublichealth.ca and we’ll do our best to give you some ideas.


Q. Where can I find an approved kitchen to run my YTC series?

A. Southwestern Public Health maintains a list of approved kitchens that are found in Elgin and Oxford Counties.  Contact us at healthyeating@swpublichealth.ca and we’ll help you find one close to you.  The St.Thomas site of Southwestern Public Health also has an approved community kitchen that all trained YTC leaders are eligible to use.  If you’re interested, let us know.

Last Updated: April 5, 2017