Before 2020, Heat of the Kitchen looked like a Culinary Arts Class. The difference is that while most of our students love to cook (or want to learn to cook), many of them don’t necessarily want to be chefs. It is all about being a part of something real, tangible and tasty, where you are using all of your senses as you work. It translates well into getting ready for life after high school as students identify in themselves attributes in our working environment that they can use outside the classroom, in jobs, college, life.
Better yet, we share a universal connection when we explore the worlds of food, cooking, and working together. Cooking, after all, is what makes us human. When you cook together (particularly with the food you have grown, picked, or collected from a farmer) you are unquestionably part of a team. Then when others, who you may not know very well (or even at all) enjoy your cooking, it means something, an instant and lasting combination of self-accomplishment, pride of work, and respect. And better yet, you know they are right when you taste your own cooking. You know on many different levels that your efforts were worth it.
Currently, we teach at Ida B. Wells High School, a continuation high school in the San Francisco Unified School District. Thanks to additional support from DCYF, private donations, and our fiscal sponsor, Buchanan YMCA, we are entering our 10th year -that’s a lot of delicious meals. We are proud to have two teachers, Chef Debbie & Chef Mariah leading the charge (see another post about them here). Please contact us with any ideas or suggestions, or if you would like us to visit your business or discuss our larger growth project, PRACTICE.