Education for Impoverished Guatemalan Youth

Oct 11, 2012

Youth learn how to love vegetables, and cook them

Cooking Class 1
Cooking Class 1

Through our youth group, at-risk Guatemalan students have the opportunity to participate in many activities outside of school that are both educational and social. The idea is to provide youth with a well-rounded set of experiences that will help them to feel more connected at school and in their community and to develop the skills to be successful adults. A great example is a recent cooking class taught by Lia Huber, a well-respected chef from California who was volunteering in Guatemala on a Vision Team.

While the kids most often bake cakes and other desserts, Lia was interested in teaching ways to incorporate more vegetables into their diet. This was a great opportunity to expand on the group's knowledge and skills.

With all of her cooking, Lia strives to find recipes that are healthy and also delicious, so people eat vegetables because they enjoy them. Turns out that the barriers to eating nutritious foods in Guatemala don’t differ much from those Lia encounters in the U.S. These include limited time to cook, inability to afford fresh foods, and her personal favorite, the impression that kids don’t like vegetables. Still, Lia was determined to show that vegetables can be delicious and not too complicated to prepare.

During the class, the students listened to a mini lecture from Lia on being mindful of diet (“do you feel energized after you eat a bag of chips?”) and basic nutrition (“the micronutrients that make vegetables look so beautiful and smell so strong and taste so wonderful are exactly what make them so good for you too”). Then, they worked with Lia to make caramelized squash and onions and sautéed Swiss chard with toasted garlic.

The kids loved the food, to Lia's joy — they polished off every last bite. One teen said he didn’t like onions at the beginning of the class. By the end, he was eating the caramelized onions out of the pan.

The following day, it was even more clear the class had made an impression. At the Vision Team’s farewell ceremony, one of the boys who was clearly a leader gave a moving speech as he thanked Lia for teaching them. Another girl who was quite shy during the class approached her and proudly declared she used her new knife skills cutting potatoes that morning.

The class was a great opportunity for the youth we serve and demonstrates well the diversity of enriching experiences made possible by your support of our secondary education and youth program.

Cooking Class 2
Cooking Class 2
Cooking Class 3
Cooking Class 3
Cooking Class 4
Cooking Class 4
Cooking Class 5
Cooking Class 5
Cooking Class 6
Cooking Class 6

About Project Reports

Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.

If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating or by subscribing to this project's RSS feed.

An anonymous donor will match all new monthly recurring donations, but only if 75% of donors upgrade to a recurring donation today.
Terms and conditions apply.
Make a monthly recurring donation on your credit card. You can cancel at any time.
Make a donation in honor or memory of:
What kind of card would you like to send?
How much would you like to donate?
gift Make this donation a gift, in honor of, or in memory of someone?


Common Hope

St. Paul, MN, United States

Project Leader

Kate Lucas

St. Paul, MN United States

Where is this project located?

Map of Education for Impoverished Guatemalan Youth