I see with my hands – American Master Chef 2012 Christine Hà Inspires Underprivileged Youth on their Journey to a better life
It was a day full of energy and inspiration at the REACH Institute. REACH joined forces with the U.S. Embassy in Vietnam to create an unforgettable meeting between Chef Christine Hà and a group of young students facing tough challenges in their lives.
Imagine this: The room was buzzing with excitement, and the stage was set with important guests like Kate Bartlett from the U.S. Embassy, the famous Chef Christine Hà, REACH representatives, and about 30 REACH Cooking students and graduates, including deaf students. The theme of the day was thrilling: "Helping Young People Discover Their Talents and Achieve Success in Their Careers and Lives." This theme meant a lot to the students, who had fewer chances to realize their dreams.
The most exciting part of the day was when Chef Christine Hà shared her incredible journey to becoming a MasterChef in the United States, despite the complete loss of her eyesight at the age of 20. Her story was like a rollercoaster ride, but she said something powerful: her disability was not the biggest challenge; it was her motivation to prove that even people with disabilities can do amazing things. Her love for Vietnamese food was like rocket fuel for her. It pushed her to show the world the delicious flavors of dishes like "thịt kho tàu" (caramelized pork) and everyday ingredients like fish sauce.
Christine Hà gave the students a big dose of encouragement: she said that everyone has a special talent, and the key is to believe in yourself to unlock it. When asked what makes a good chef, she said it's curiosity, always wanting to learn new things, and being adventurous in the kitchen. She also told everyone how much she loved Vietnamese spices, especially cloves, because they reminded her of the wonderful smell of pho.
The most exciting part of the day was when Christine Hà showed off her cooking skills. She made a delicious Korean dish called Dak Dori Tang, and it was like watching a magic show in the kitchen. Even though she is visually impaired, her confidence and passion for cooking shone through, leaving everyone in awe.
As the event ended, Mr. Đoàn Tuấn Dũng, Deputy Director of REACH, shared his thoughts: "Most of our students have faced tough times and had a hard time accessing regular education and training. Today's event gave them hope and confidence, just like how Christine Hà conquered her dream of becoming a MasterChef."
REACH, a non-profit organization, has changed the lives of over 20,000 students in 15 years. The coolest part? More than 80% of them found stable jobs, helping Vietnam reach its goals for youth development.