When Loyle Carner was a kid, his granddad taught him how to cook by sharing all the recipes he’d picked up while travelling the world in the navy. At a time when Loyle felt “impulsive, hot-headed and very distracted” (he has been diagnosed with ADHD), the kinetic energy of the cooking calmed him down, streamlined all his thoughts into a singular task, and made him feel happy and chilled out.
Because of the positive impact that cooking had on Loyle’s life, the South London rapper wanted to share this with other kids who were also diagnosed with ADHD. He decided to launch a cooking school where he could teach them recipes and have a laugh, focusing on all the stuff they were good at rather than what they were told they couldn't do. “I thought if it helped me, it could definitely help kids in a similar situation,” Loyle explains in a short film about the cooking school, which we are premiering below. “I felt like kids could spend the day, or spend the week at a place that’s separate to school, separate to the pressures at home, but was just about them and making them feel brilliant, and showing them that they could do something and possibly make it a career.”
“There’s a lot of negative things that come with ADHD because it’s closely linked with dyslexia,” he adds. “So it’s like, ‘You can’t spell, you can’t read, you can’t write, you can’t focus.’ There’s all these can’ts but there’s nobody saying you can do anything, and I think that’s what was important to me about starting this school. It’s like, ‘Look, it doesn’t matter what people have said you can’t do – you can cook'.”Watch the entire film below and click here to read our interview with Loyle Carner for Noisey’s Guide to Music and Mental Health.