We're excited to share what our wonderful volunteer, Jeff, has been up to in the kitchen of the Casa Hogar Torre Fuerte!
Having come to Arequipa, Peru from the state of California in the U.S., Jeff brought his culinary skills (and a suitcase full of ingredients!) to the girls in the Casa Hogar. Below you'll find a series of photos from his time volunteering with the girls, and hear from him about his experiences.
In Jeff's words- The kitchen truly is the heart of the home. Everything happens out of the kitchen.
Jeff volunteered in the Casa Hogar kitchen every day of the week! He did everything from peel potatoes to help mop the floor. On Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays, Jeff gave cooking classes to the girls, all of whom loved having him there! With his help, the girls were able to create a variety of delicious pies, cookies, brownies, and even chocolate cake!
According to Jeff, working in the kitchen was no easy task! It required a willingness to do any and all tasks needed to help keep the kitchen running, a willingness to learn and receive feedback from the women in the kitchen, and the ability to simply go with the flow. As Jeff stated- I'm there to assist them, not try to run the show.
During his time with Volunteers Peru, Jeff valued the ability to go back to rustic, traditional cooking with these women that goes back for multiple generations. The women taught him how to use every scrap of food in order to avoid being wasteful, something Jeff will be taking home with him to the U.S. Jeff was pleasantly surprised to find that the girls from the Casa Hogar were immediately trusting, loving, and welcoming of him and all of our other volunteers from the very start. To him, it was a reminder that children can be the same just about anywhere, regardless of material wealth.
Volunteers Peru is incredibly thankful for the time that Jeff spent with us here in Arequipa! His presence in the kitchen was positive and lead to a mutual learning and understanding. While he shared his own talents and knowledge of baking with the girls and kitchen staff, he was also able to take a step back and learn that they too had their own way of doing things. We loved seeing the girls of the Casa Hogar, along with some of our volunteers, run in and out of the kitchen, anxiously awaiting Jeff's next creation!