We appreciate you checking in with us this month and we’ve got two big announcements to share from Bangkok. The first is that there’s a piece of equipment we’ve needed for quite some time and it’s finally arrived. We’ll give you a hint, it’s not a giant oven, or some expensive “must-have” kitchen gadget.
From Your Hood to Ours
If you’ve been following our story, a few months back we renovated a run down house to be a kitchen space with the help of funding from Bangkok Patana School. The new space allowed for use to have more room to host the swarming children of the neighborhood, who all seem interested in cooking at once. However, even after painting, replacing the floor, and knocking out a wall, the new space still wasn’t much of a kitchen.
That’s because doing more cooking in large groups was nearly impossible to do safely with the little to no airflow in the building. In Thailand, most kitchens are powered by portable gas burners which can be dangerous to use with out safety precautions, including having good ventilation. This also meant when we made traditional chili filled Thai dishes, we didn’t have to do much before everyone in the room was coughing and choking on the spiced filled air which couldn’t escape the room.
The good news is we have just installed a custom made exhaust hood into the room. We should have done this a few months ago, but honestly there had been several delays in making the hood happen. We appealed to private donors and to foundations offering grants, but none of the parties were interested in the not so flashy upgrade to our kitchen. Instead we used funding from your efforts to fund cooking classes this year, and spent about $500 to install a new ventilation hood. The new hood will not only improve the safety of our students, but because it is large enough to accommodate more than one burner, it will also open up greater possibilities for our cooking curriculum in the future.
Securing our Bridge to You
The other big safety upgrade is a bit technical, as we’ve just installed an SSL certificate to encrypt our website. To put it in laymen’s terms, we’ve improved the security of our site to be sure your information is safe. This means whether you’re making a donation, booking a cooking class in Bangkok, or just purchasing a t-shirt, all your information is transmitted safely and securely.
The added encryption to our website also opens up more possibilities in the future as we grow. For example, the added security may expedite further development of online teaching resources, and fundraising products for our own mini-marketplace. And more importantly, it means you can give not only with Paypal, but with any credit card you want, without fretting about being exposed to fraud.
We’re steadily building towards ambitious goals to connect better with you and improve the lives of our students and their families here in Thailand. Thank you for joining us on this journey and stick with us as we grow, and strive to conquer our most ambitious and challenging year yet!