On my second day volunteering, the recipe that the kids made was called Black-eyed Bean Salad. It’s a dish that originated from a country in the African continent, Senegal. Its capital is the city of Dakar has a population of 13 million. Senegal’s official language is French.  The type of instruction is interactive where kids were encouraged to share what they know and write it on the whiteboard.

The kids were asked to count the black-eyed beans and I was pleasantly surprised to see a lot of them count up to a hundred with little help. The teachers asked if they knew what the benefits of the black-eyed beans were and some of them made their guesses until they gave up. The teacher explained that it helps prevent cholesterol from being absorbed into your bloodstream, which reduces the risk of developing heart disease.

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Each table had tomatoes cucumbers, and carrots and the kids were asked to peel them and cut it in small pieces. While the kids were working on peeling and cutting, the teachers took the opportunity to talk about the global problem that was going on in Senegal. There are poor sanitation practices when it comes to water safety, which causes kids to get sick more often. The kids were asked if they knew what pollution was, a number of them thought of it as littering. They clearly understood that if they wanted clean water, then there shouldn’t be any pollution or littering near the water.


The kids started adding all the vegetables in a mixing bowl for tossing to be served. Most of the kids enjoyed this healthy recipe, even though it was the day before Valentine’s Day and a lot of them had eaten candy before the class.

Below is the recipe used to make the black-eyed bean salad.


  • 1 cup black-eyed beans, rinsed, soaked overnight
  • 2 ripe tomatoes, seede, finely chopped
  • 2 Lebanese cucumbers, seeded, finely chopped
  • 1 red capsicum chopped
  • 1 spring onion, chopped
  • 2 limes, juiced


  1. Soak all black-eyed beans overnight.
  2. Cut all vegetables into small pieces.
  3. Add all the ingredients in a big bowl.
  4. Mix them with a spatula.
  5. Squeeze lime into the bowl.