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University of Iowa News Release


Jan. 22, 2010

Update: Payment for the fundraising Lunch with the Chefs Jan. 28 must be cash or check; no University IDs or credit cards will be accepted.

Lunch with the Chefs to benefit Haiti earthquake relief

On Thursday, Jan. 28, Lunch with the Chefs at the Iowa Memorial Union will feature a special Haitian menu, with a portion of the proceeds going to the Haiti Relief and Development Fund of American Red Cross, Grant Wood Area Chapter.

Lunch with the Chefs will be from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the IMU Main Lounge. Cost will be $10. Of that amount, $6 will benefit the Grant Wood American Red Cross Haiti fund. Payment for the fundraising Lunch with The Chefs must be cash or check; no University IDs or credit cards will be accepted. The goal is to raise $5,000 for earthquake relief efforts.  Live music is also planned; computers will be available for attendees to make online donations to the Red Cross.

Each month during the fall and spring semesters, IMU chefs serve a four-course meal with a particular theme for Lunch with the Chefs. Lucy Joseph (photo, left), a Haitian graduate student at the University of Iowa, came up with idea to add a special lunch with a Haitian theme to benefit earthquake relief. To set up this benefit, she worked with Nicole Nisly, UI interim diversity officer, Downing Thomas, UI associate provost and dean of international programs, and Richard Geer, general manager of IMU Retail Dining Services.

 "Everyone likes to eat, so I figured this was a great way to get the UI community involved by asking if a Lunch with the Chefs theme could be a Haitian theme, and it would be great fundraiser at the same time," Joseph said. "My fellow Haitian students and I really want the UI community to take this opportunity to not only help out with disaster relief efforts, but also take the time to learn about our beautiful culture. When we see or talk about Haiti with others it's always negative, but we wanted to take this opportunity to show and educate the beautiful aspects and the great food of the Haitian culture."

Joseph and a group of Haitian students advised the IMU Chefs on the authenticity of food being served. The menu includes: Haitian potato and beet salad; garden salad with lime chile vinaigrette; chicken creole; red beans and rice; and pineapple carrot cake with citrus glaze.

Joseph said she is still in shock about the earthquake and has been trying to keep herself busy. "My relatives on my father's side area all okay, but I have an aunt who lost her home. I'm still waiting to hear from a few relatives on my mother's side," she said.

For more information, see or contact IMU Food Services at 319-335-3408.

The American Red Cross name is used with its permission, which in no way constitutes an endorsement, express or implied, of any product, service, company, individual or political position. For more information about the American Red Cross, call 1-800-HELP-NOW or e-mail

For more information on other ways to help, visit the UI Haitian Earthquake Aid Web site at:

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500

MEDIA CONTACTS: Richard Geer, IMU Food Services, 319-335-3408; George McCrory, University News Services, 319-384-0012,