Photo: From right to left, top to bottom: Độ - Quân - Hảo from class 27 during their internship program
In the beginning of December, 7 outstanding KOTO trainees from class 11, 26 and 27 headed to New Zealand to experience their very first overseas internship. This was the first time KOTO could bring trainees to charming New Zealand to experience the new culture. The internship program lasted for 3 months, in which they had gained priceless experience in Auckland’s top hotels and restaurants. This internship resulted from KOTO’s previous partnership with New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam, and from the idea of bringing a slice of KOTO to the people of Auckland; to raise awareness for the initiative and its social enterprise model, to forge lasting relationships with the foundation, and to get some beautiful, authentic Vietnamese cuisine into Auckland.
The hotels and restaurants’ supervisors expressed their appreciation for the trainees:
“Hao is knowledgeable, well trained and has a good work ethic. She was a great asset to have in our team. She always maintained a professional image and her performance was always very consistent.” - said Tsheten Yolmo | Supervisor Sofitel Hotel, Auckland
“Connor (Cường) has done exceptionally well in his internship. He has a great work ethic and has a good willingness to learn. He always shows good initiative at work and does not have to be always told to perform his tasks. Well done Connor. Keep it up!!” -said Tsheten Yolmo | Supervisor Sofitel Hotel, Auckland
“Độ learnt fast and became an asset to our kitchen. He is reliable, precise and consistent and capable of reproducing what he is taught. He is very interested in cooking and wrote down everything he learnt, a very good way to develop knowledge and skills. I have no doubt he will continue learning. It was a real pleasure working with Độ” – said Yannick Cayrol | Supervisor Pullman Hotel, Auckland
On behalf of 7 trainees, Ngọc from Class 26 expressed his sincere gratitude:
“I would like to send my gratitude to Mr.Jimmy and KOTO for giving us this exceptional opportunity to experience international working environment in one of the best places in the world. We also want to thank our supervisors at the Novotel Auckland Ellerslie, Sofitel Auckland Viaduct Harbour, Sen Kitchen Restaurant, Pullman Auckland for your hospitality and continuous guidance in not only working but also in our life in Auckland”
KOTO would not make this trip a reality without the support of sponsors: Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Vietnam, Mr. Nick La, Dr. Trung Dinh-Toan, Meadow High School, and our donors for your donations through GoFundMe Campaign; supporters and Partners: New Zealand Embassy in Vietnam, Sen Vietnamese Kitchen and Bar, Novotel Ellerslie, Pullman Hotel, Sofitel Hotel Auckland, Mr & Mrs Barton, Mrs. Freddie and her family, Ms. Kathryn and her family, Mr. Darryn Bell & Mrs. Joni Hoang, Mr.Tony Martin - Consul General Ms. Michelle Preston - HCMC 2016 New Zealand Food & Wine Festival and of course amazing KOTO team for making this trip a memorable one.