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Justine Goes to Work!


Josie, Vicky and Justine in the kitchen

A dear friend in Manila, Vicky, has agreed to employ two of our NingNing girls over the summer break from April until June. She runs a children’s cooking school called “Tiny Kitchen.” Justine and Josie have started training on Saturdays. I went to visit and got to see them in action!

Justine and Josie’s role is to assist the teacher, Vicky, with the students learning to cook. They will help her with the grocery shopping, preparing the ingredients for the various dishes, and they will help the kids apply the cooking techniques they learn to cooking real dishes. Yum yum!

Justine is helping this boy make a Spanish dish Paella (below). She helped him do all the chopping and measuring. This job fits perfectly with her course of study – Hotel and Restaurant Management. She will actually get to put what she is learning in the classroom into action…

Justine the Chef

Josie, aged 16, is helping this young student bake cinnamon rolls. Josie is currently a senior in high school and wants to go to college to become a pre-school teacher. This job is good for her too because she will have lots of interaction with young children.

Josie assisting young cooking student (Akiko looking on)

This week, Vicky gave the girls a list of ingredients needed for next week’s class. They are to familiarize themselves with the ingredients and practice taking measurements. Below is the make-shift kitchen that Justine’s family uses to cook in their shanty, or make-shift home. As you can see, its not much, but Justine’s mom told me it hasn’t stopped Justine from practicing her new skills and techniques on her family. She is loving it!

Justine practicing at home

Both girls are being paid a salary each saturday they go for training. This is also an opportunity for them to learn money management, as they have never had an income that lasts beyond their daily needs. In order to do this, the girls will be required to save a certain percentage of their earnings each week. Vicky will pay them in full and they will put a portion of it back into a “savings” jar to be safely stored away.

At the end of the training sessions, they will put the savings toward a down deposit to open their very own bank accounts. Their parents don’t even have bank accounts, so this will be very new for them. The salary they earn from their full-time summer job will be put into their accounts for safe keeping.

They will begin working at Tiny Kitchen full-time the first week of April. Vicky will provide housing, meals and uniforms for the entire summer. This means they will be able to save a lot from their earnings as well as help with their families needs. We are grateful for this amazing opportunity for the girls to learn the responsibilities that come along with having a real job and also for them to be able to explore and develop their God-given talents and passions.

More updates to come on our rising star chefs!!

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