Photo blog: The Kenyans cooking up a storm for Mary’s Meals

Can there ever be ‘too many cooks’? Not for Mary’s Meals!

Shona Shea
Shona Shea
Content Development Manager

Back to all stories | Posted on 01/03/17 in Blog

Team work is the name of the game for these three cooks – Lucy, Philip and Patrick – captured here at Kapsoye Primary School on the very first day of feeding.  Like many of our cooks across the world, Phillip (pictured in the middle) has children at the school where he prepares Mary’s Meals and told us: “My children are at this school but at lunchtime I didn’t speak to them, I just served them like everybody else. But I know when I go home tonight they will have lots to say about it and they will want to talk about it a lot.” 


We love this photo of the cooks at Karabangarok Primary School in Turkana. After lots of serious photograph taking they suddenly burst into fits of laughter when they posed together!


It’s not just this photo that makes us smile, but what was said while we were taking it at this school in Eldoret! Racecourse Primary School’s cook Biwott Samson said: “Food has brought a high level of children sitting down concentrating and the level of education is advancing. I can see the difference in the children. The attendance rate is high and they look very healthy.”


At Kapongeria ECD in Turkana, we were delighted to meet such an enthusiastic school feeding committee. Made up of community members and often including teachers and volunteers, these committees help ensure the smooth running of the programme and work hard to build community support – an essential part of Mary’s Meals’ approach.


There’s more to cooking Mary’s Meals than stirring porridge! Not only do our cooks rise early to prepare the fires and stoves, they also pay great attention to the clean-up operation afterwards. This ensures things are ready for the next day’s feeding when groups from a few hundred to a few thousand children will line up across the world to receive their nutritious Mary’s Meals!


In Kenya, lots of our cooks are men. Like Paul Njuguna who has been a Mary’s Meals cook at Mwiruti Primary School for two years and is a parent of children at the school. He said: “I enjoy being a cook for Mary’s Meals. In the morning the children leave for school with nothing at all. At lunchtime they play more than at any other time – the food is giving them energy. Education is like a key to their future life."

We love this photo of yet another Mary’s Meals volunteer going above and beyond! This time at Kaikor ECD in Turkana where this cook made the most of the energy the children had from their lunch to sing songs and play some great games with them that looked a lot of fun! Like this one called ‘the snake’! 

Smiles and time for a well-earned break after cooking for 1,539 children at Haruma Primary School in Eldoret, Kenya.  


Lots of Mary’s Meals staff have tried stirring these big pots of food over the years, but we’re always told ‘it’s harder than it looks’! Arif who is a cook at Langas Primary School in Eldoret makes it look easy!