Heat of the Kitchen helps underserved youth realize their amazing value through active, professional practice. By cooking, cleaning and serving together, we connect in ways that last long after the dishes are done.
It’s time to hit the reset button and relax and begin to tell a wonderful story. Especially since I did hit the website reset button a little early (!) – please bear with the mid-renovation style of our current website as we prepare to add more features.
I’m eager to share that we are in the midst of a new project which is still “in the rough” like the constantly changing storm that is 2020. But there is refreshed satisfaction in doing something that has value.
Our new project? In short, we’ve found a way to provide ingredients and a virtual cooking class for our students to make a meal for their family once a week. We’ll add more content soon, such as recipes, packing saves, and provider highlights.
What started out as a crazy idea has become something that matters. Every week, we figure out better ways to pack and deliver groceries and communicate with our students. It couldn’t happen without the leading drive and creativity of our teachers, Chefs Debbie & Mariah.
This may not be the taproot of what Heat of the Kitchen has been all about, or maybe it is? Making connections and witnessing our students’ pride in their work are key strivers for us. To hear a student suddenly say “This tastes really good” is music to our ears.
More soon, just wanted to share our excitement, even in the midst of our website renovations.
***Yes, our 3/12 Long Table Dinner Event is now canceled. ***
Yes, it was a sad decision to make but our students always give us hope, as well as all of you who reserved seats and sent us emails and texts of support! Thank you!
We hope to salvage our plans to perhaps create an internal event in the near future and who knows? It might be just what our school needs.
We are already working with our third cohort of students! Time is flying for all of us, so let us tempt you with these photographs taken over the last few weeks to join us for our next Long Table Dinner!
In looking for one word to summarize this semester, the word heartwarming appeared.
We all have challenges. In looking back, how we’ve succeeded through the unexpected surprises is where we get that heartwarming satisfaction and desire to strive. “I didn’t know I could do this ” turns into “I want to do more.”
So yes, unexpected surprises caused us to postpone our Long Table Dinner (now our sights are firmly set on offering Long Table Dinner #11 in Mid March 2020!). Instead, students built other projects – making an array of muffins weekly for a shelter, supporting our budding school breakfast club, and spending time after school to work on resumes and job preparation. They are amazing.
Meanwhile, we are working on Heat of the Kitchen and our future – It is time to revitalize our advisory board and review and reframe our long term plans for growth. If this interests you, please contact us! We need your help with the unexpected surprises and with sharing in the heartwarming satisfaction ahead.
All of a sudden, it is the start of another school year, our 11th! And every year there is always excitement and a touch of nervousness that makes us each wonder if we are truly ready. Smiles work wonders to let us know we are in the right place at the right time.
But before things really get moving again, we want to thank our summer collaborators:
OFA: Opportunities For All gave us the chance to work with a cohort of 24 youth ages 12-18. It was our first summer offering and it was so worth it! The youth once again inspired us in how they tackled recipes and created their own cookbook.
Bi-Rite Family of Businesses generously featured us this month as a community partner! We are grateful for their kindness in how they have supported our program over the years and are honored to be a featured community partner.
Thank you both for the opportunities you’ve continued to provide us!
Now back to school. We look forward to getting “into the weeds” soon and planning our next Long Table Dinner. Stay tuned and Happy August!
The Green Room Gala was definitely our biggest event ever. All of those crazy moments were worth it to gather together such wonderful people, for a wonderful purpose.
Behind the scenes, there were people who showed up early and kept that sense of assurance when the going got stressful. Thank you to the ladies from NOPA and Nopalito who were there all the way through, and to the incredible chefs Tu David Phu, Yaku Moton-Spruill and Michael Martinez, for keeping the tempo and redirecting as needed to handle the last minute needs. Thank you to our donors, volunteers and almost daily cheerleaders especially these constants: Bi-Rite Family of Businesses, Josey Baker Bread, Nopalito and Gus’s Community Markets. And most of all, an extra special thank you to the youth participants who said YES, at every step and stayed on their feet and smiled all the way until the very end!
Here is a link to the video shown at the event. Whetstone Media, it is so great to work with you and how well you instantly understand our work. We look forward to what the future will bring!
Hello Friends: This is what happens when you realize how many great people are right here in SF, making things happen, not only in our hospitality culinary industry, but also in our increasingly complicated educational situations, and most of all in our super-inspiring youth programs. Put it all together and join us for The Green Room Gala on Thursday March 14th 6-8:30pm.
Two central themes unite our efforts: a) we’ve all experienced the value in cooking, eating and serving together and see it as a catalyst of connection, from realizing your own value to witnessing the power of community and b) we have a common interest in SF building a comprehensive way for youth to be supported as they navigate our worlds of work, education and life. It is a call to action if we may call it that, for a youth center near City Hall with the welcoming doorway of hospitality and culinary.
That is a lot. And if we start now we can get closer to making it real for our youth. They are pretty amazing, so come and see for yourself! Ticket link will be available very soon. In the meantime, clear your calendars for the evening of Thursday, March 14th, 6-8:30pm. Can’t wait to see you!
So much gets busier this time of year, I almost don’t want to add to the noise, except that when we are recognized in a feature article about culinary and youth by our DCYF funders, it is hard to keep quiet. Here’s the link to the article that includes a few beautiful quotes from present and past students.
We have so much appreciation for what we get to do on a daily basis. It may take a lot of effort and there may be times when we wonder why we do what we do, but the resulting magic moments are always worth it. Thank you everyone!
Every quarter feels like a whirlwind. And this past quarter was no exception, and with extra good reasons. Here are some-
October 5th, National Manufacturer’s Day: where our District 5 Supervisor Brown’s office worked with OEWD to bring in 4 small, local manufacturers to tell our students their story. It was such a great way to affirm with our students the hope and drive and support that is out there. Here is a pearl of wisdom from each of these small business manufacturers:
don’t wait for an invitation, don’t hold yourself back, push yourself to take chances (Kelly McVicker, McVicker’s Pickles)
find what you are good at, and then reach out for help (Smitten Ice Cream Ladies)
failing in the moment is not failing in the bigger picture – take the golden nuggets (Josey Baker, Josey Baker Bread)
follow your passion, follow your nose, you never know where it might lead (Christian, San Franpsycho)
Special thanks to Shakirah Simley of Vallie Brown’s office (and Vallie Brown!), Susan Ma of OEWD and Rima Vora of SF Made for their additional help and support in making this happen.
Next, our October 12th Long Table Dinner was a success, in a heartfelt way with our diving into Aleppo. When we think of that first week with our students and compare that with our last week with them, their growth and drive are as inspiring as these small business owners.
It takes looking back and seeing that, wow, we really did do a lot, and more importantly that it meant something – to us, to our guests, and most importantly, to our students.