LEWISTON — SeniorsPlus has announced the launch of a new dining site in the St. Mary’s Nutrition Center at 208 Bates St. that is designed to cater to the Somali community

The public is invited to attend lunches presented there on Mondays (except holidays) at 11:30 a.m. A $3 donation is suggested.

The launch of this dining site is made in conjunction with the Senior New Mainers Cooking Project, a program designed to engage older new Mainers who are members of the refugee community in Lewiston. According to the New York Times, Lewiston has a population of 36,300, of which 6,000 residents are Somali — most of whom arrived here in the past 15 years.

The program is made possible by a “Healthy Food for Every Age” grant from the Harvard Pilgrim HealthCare Foundation.

For this nutrition program, registered dietitians from the Nutrition Center at St. Mary’s Hospital, in collaboration with Healthy Androscoggin at Central Maine Medical Center as the cultural broker, will teach ethnically-appropriate cooking classes to older adults in the New Mainers community in collaboration with SeniorsPlus at the new dining site.

By the end of the project’s initial year, in addition to lunches, the expectation is that the dining site will have offered a minimum of one set of six cooking classes with translated materials, tips and nutrition information.

Information about SNAP, local farmers markets and the Farm Share program will also be shared to broaden the attendees’ knowledge of healthy eating and cooking.

Comments are not available on this story.