We are grateful to have a diverse community of students, staff and families from around the world. Each member of our community brings their own background and story that enrich the ASH experience. Our ASH Voices series zooms in on our community as we learn more about who we are in our roles at ASH and life outside of school.
Meet Helge, one of our amazing ASH cafeteria staff members, who has been a part of our community since March 2016. Operated by Eurest Catering, our on campus cafeterias are at the heart of our students’ (and staff) break times and an important part of their everyday lives here at ASH. The people who operate the cafeteria, are therefore very special in our community and they have had to cope with many challenges throughout the last year due to the pandemic. We asked Helge questions about her life here at ASH and how her and her colleagues have continued to adapt this past year.
What do you enjoy most about being part of this community and the #ASHexperience?
Working at ASH means that everyday is different and the team here made me feel very welcome from the beginning. I knew Dirk from Eurest Catering and so for me that was a big advantage. I enjoy the contact with the students, managing challenges we come up against, the fruit and sushi live presentations and running the contests for the students like guessing the amount of easter eggs and ‘kruidnoten’.
Can you share with us an experience you have had at ASH that makes you proud and something you will remember for years to come?
All these challenges I described above make me really proud. But I also remember the first year when I saw the Santa Lucia event for the first time, the spontaneous choirs singing during the holiday period, the multiple activities during awareness week, etc. This made me realize that this school is so different from a local Dutch school! Plus, in my previous job I was working mostly with adults so it was a completely new experience for me, so many kids during the breaks! I was a bit overwhelmed by all of it but it all felt right, comfortable and fun.
What will you remember about this school year marked by the COVID-19 pandemic?
The rules, the reduced contact with the students, the lunch packages for the elementary school. There were so many students that I often talked to and during this year I haven’t had the chance to talk to, I see them growing so fast!
What motivates you?
My job is fun, I am lucky this is the location I work at! The combination of the student contact and the different challenges from my job made me realize I never end up having a ‘tunnel vision’. I always try to find new recipes that are healthy, without nuts, gluten free, organize new promotions and then make it happen with the help of the whole Eurest team.
What are your passions?
Outside of ASH I work as a volunteer in a local hospice. This year I couldn’t do as much because of COVID rules but we’re building up again and it always helps me put things into perspective.
What do wellbeing and happiness look like to you?
I enjoy the small things in my daily life, the food, the colors of the spring, a relaxing massage, a day out with friends or a BBQ at home with my family.