For Immediate Release - October 25, 2018
Media Contact: Sue McGovern, ​, 781.315.3400

Culinary Talents of Immigrant Women to Be Showcased in Cooking Videos Screening and Food Tasting on November 30th
The public event is a collaboration of In Her Presence and Maine College of Art & Design

On Friday, November 30th, 4:30-5 pm, cooking videos of seven immigrant women preparing their most treasured recipes will be screened at Maine College of Art & Design (MECA&D), Osher Hall, 2nd floor, 522 Congress Street, Portland. A tasting of the dishes in the videos will follow from 5–7pm. On hand will be the immigrant women who participated in the project - a partnership of the In Her Presence non-profit and MECA&D - and the MECA&D student filmmakers who made the videos. The screening and tasting event is open to all members of the public.

“Maine College of Art & Design appreciates the opportunity to partner with In Her Presence, which is doing so much to empower women and girls from minority communities in Maine,” said Amelia Garretson-Persans, MECA&D project faculty advisor. “We encourage the Portland community to join us on November 30th to get to know the chefs behind the recipes, experience their delicious dishes, and gain insight into cultures from all over the world.”

Claudette Ndayininahaze, co-founder with Abusana Micky Bondo, In Her Presence, said, “We are thrilled to be able to share the talents of some of the remarkable women from In Her Presence. We hope this series will help them raise their visibility in the community and achieve their personal ambitions.”

Among the chefs and recipes showcased in the videos are Yolande Matoko Makaba, a resident of Portland, who came to Maine in 2016 from The Republic of the Congo. In the video, she prepares crème brûlée and crêpes, which she describes as the “most requested recipes within the realm of desserts,” and “simple and small, but very delicious.” Yolande trained professionally in the French pastry arts back home and has worked in grand hotels and restaurants. She hopes to someday use her skills professionally in the U.S. Other dishes featured in the videos include fish, brochette (BBQ skewers), and desserts from countries such as Burundi, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Iraq, and Angola.

For updates on the project, visit or follow them on Instagram.

To RSVP to the screening and tasting (RSVP recommended) email

About In Her Presence
In Her Presence is created by and for women from minority communities in Maine. Through increased educational opportunities and providing access to knowledge through high level training, the nonprofit’s goal is to empower more women and girls to reduce systems of inequity, to advocate for themselves and their families, understand, analyze and assess the impact of racial injustices and learn tools to combat inequities.

About Maine College of Art & Design (MECA&D)
Founded in 1882, Maine College of Art & Design is located in the heart of downtown Portland's thriving Arts District. It offers a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 11 studio majors (including Animation & Game Art, Master of Fine Arts in Studio Art, Master of Arts in Teaching, and the Salt Graduate Certificate in Documentary Studies, as well asPre-Collegeand programming. Visit the Institute for Contemporary Art (ICA) at MECA&D, the Bob Crewe Gallery, and the Joanne Waxman Libraryat Maine College of Art & Design, 522 Congress Street, Portland, Maine 04101, Tel. (207) 669-5521.