A HEALTH program in Daylesford aiming to keep students engaged in school and preventing drug and alcohol use has been put back in the state spotlight.
The Cook, The Chef and Us is again a finalist in the VicHealth Awards for programs improving mental well-being.
The program, delivered by Daylesford Secondary College and Hepburn Health, works alongside the region's chefs, bakers and caterers to help set students on a path into the hospitality industry.
Sessions are a break from traditional class settings and can be a lead into the school's VET hospitality program.
Students also work through hospitality qualifications like safe food handling and barista training.
The Cook, The Chef and Us was developed three years ago and is funded via Alcohol and Drug Foundation's local drug action team, which aims to engage communities in grassroots prevention strategies.
Hepburn Shire Council is also a finalist for promoting health through physical activity and sport via its active women and girls' strategy.
The Courier reporter Melanie Whelan is a finalist for outstanding reporting of women's sport.
VicHealth Awards showcase "trailblazing health promotion work" across the state. Almost 60 finalists from across wide-ranging fields have been recognised for helping Victorian live healthier, happier lives.
Awards will be presented in a ceremony in Melbourne on December 3.
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