Ministry maintains focus on healthy eating habits

In Ovarian Cancer Treatment, a woman in an urban area searches for healthy food alternatives linked to a local ministry through a cooking class.

Now Vernelia McKnight is not only singing praises of the ministry called A Table in the Wilderness, she is helping teach some of the organization’s classes.

“To be honest, I feel like it was a godsend to me,” McKnight said of the nonprofit. “Anytime, they have something, I want people to know about it.”

A Table in the Wilderness, with McKnight, will kick off the new year by expanding its efforts to help Oklahomans eat healthy. This year, the new vegan food pantry, one of the ministry’s biggest projects, will bear fruit. Laurel Maulden, CEO and president of the organization, said the department is partnering with Feed the Children to help stock the store.

The organization was started several years ago by her father, Lamar Mauldin. The father and daughter duo initially focused their programming on eastern Oklahoma County, which includes northeastern Oklahoma City. Northeast Oklahoma City, until the opening of the new Homeland store in 2020, was considered a food desert due to the lack of grocery stores and healthy food options.

The Choctaws said their goal is to promote healthy eating as it helps prevent or mitigate the impact of diseases such as diabetes or high blood pressure.

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