This past week our Courageous Kitchen students had the opportunity for a special visit to local international school Bangkok Patana. There the teens participated in a student led baking activity, making chocolate chip cookies and dark chocolate brownies with students from 8 international schools from around the city. The activity was part of the 2017 ServICE Conference which aims to engage young leaders at international schools to discover ways they can more actively give back.
On the first day of the conference the participants were divided up for activities with several NGOs and small charities, where they could serve the organizations with direct action in some way. Students who indicated interest in “No Hunger”, one of the new Sustainable Development Goals, joined our Courageous Kitchen students in the Bangkok Patana cooking classroom. These students who are passionate about ending extreme hunger, improving agricultural practices, and eliminating food waste — had probably not been expecting to spend the day baking and making friends with our kids from a community in Bangkok where food can be scarce.
This activity was also rewarding because, although our students have been cooking as a part of the Courageous Kitchen activities for more than two years, our kitchen facilities are basic compared to what you would find in a western kitchen. Instead the cooking we mostly do involves Thai or Asian recipes requiring minimal electrical equipment. This means CK students are pros are stir frying on a gas burner, but had not had the opportunity to bake before. When the activity began they were forced to learn very quickly how to deal with wax paper, induction stoves, electronic scales, and the sometimes tricky controls of built-in ovens.
The activity was a giant success, and although not all of the baked goods came out as planned, the new friendships made, and young minds expanded were beyond everyone’s expectations.