Children with autism in Tupelo communicate through cooking


TUPELO,MISS.(WCBI ) -A few lucky kids in Tupelo got to spice things up in the kitchen Sunday for a good cause.

Sunday at Vanelli’s Bistro “Cooking As A First Language” gave children with autism a chance to learn a few new things.

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The organization, which has been around for two years, is trying to make the community a better place through food.

“Cooking as a first language is a nonprofit organization in Tupelo, Mississippi. our whole mission is to break down barriers and build a community over food and cooking and the way we do that is by offering authentic international cooking classes at least once a month that anyone can participate in and today we’re doing something special we’re doing a kind of specialized event for children who have autism call the language of pizza,” McElwain said.

Director of Cooking as a first language Lauren McElwain says what they did on Sunday is special.

Organizers gave children who have difficulties communicating the opportunity to come and have fun.

McElwain says pizza is a universal language, and this is a way of letting the children relax and have a good time.

“Who can’t communicate through the language of pizza? We all love pizza right? It doesn’t matter if we might have communication difficulties we can bond through making and eating pizza we partnered with Vas Vanelli. We’re in downtown Tupelo at Vanelli’s Bistro and we are just offering an opportunity for children who have these special communication needs to make their own pizza and eat it and just have fun doing it,” said McElwain.

Cooking as a first language started in the home of McElwain and has continued to grow since.