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Inter-faith Kitchen

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This tool increases awareness of global relationships and interfaith dialogue

Aims of the tool

To give participants the chance to discuss together on the process to prepare an inter-faith dialogue + to agree on ‘top tips” necessary for preparing dialogue.

Description of the tool

The idea of the "Inter-faith kitchen" was inspired by a very nice woman, Yvonee Naylor ( during the T.C.“Faith and Dialogue”, organized by "Salto Cultural Diversity" ( and held in Belfast in Spring 2007.
She uses puppetry and story-telling in order to increase awareness of global relationships and interfaith dialogue in Northern Ireland and abroad. Among other puppets, she created the “Can of Worms”, which represents, using a bit of imagination, everything harmful (prejudices, hate, problems, risks, etc) one may experiment or might be afraid to experiment in life. She drove our attention to the point that, in order to create a safe place for dialogue, we have to handle carefully “the Can of Worms” and its consequences while opening it or not.
As sometimes it is more difficult to focus directly on the delicate topic “how to enhance intercultural and inter-faith dialogue”, the organizer and trainers team used their creativity and proposed to participants a metaphor: how is it possible to cook together in an interfaith kitchen, preparing a safe place and achieving the goal to cook together?

Structure of the exercise

1) Trainers introduce the exercise and explain clearly the metaphor (and what is a metaphor), drafting the structure of the exercise on a flipchart paper.
2) Participants are divided into small groups. They can be grouped in different ways. According to the topic of “Faith and Dıalogue” T.C., we chose to divide them according to the composition of the target group of their own youth work:
(1) faith-based; (2) non faith-based; (3) and targets with no single indentity.
2) The activities of the groups are divided into three steps.
Using the metaphor “cook= dialogue”, at each stage all small groups have a particular task, or better told, they have an official task (dealing with cooking) and a hidden one (dealing with dialogue). For each stage they use the “cooking metaphor” in order to find out rules for “dialogue”.
The three tasks are:

1) How to prepare a safe kitchen to cook in( how to prepare a safe/ ideal place for dialogue). Participants are asked to think of every safety measure which may be useful to provide a safe place to cook (= dialogue). Ex: electricity, attention to burning oil, first aid kit, recepy books, etc...
2) Open "the can of worms" or not? Participants deal with the possibility to take over some risky recepies, for example by using harmful/unknown ingredients, mixing them or not, etc...( the hidden task is to deal with the opportunity of facing uncomfortable situations or not and in the case yes to which extent in the different situations)
3) Ten Top Tips in order to cook (=dialogue) together in a safe way: each buzz group writes down its Ten Bests to prepare the time for cooking together!
Each group reports its results and explains how they were reached to the plenary. Groups can go on further discussing whether they share common rules.

Available downloads:


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SALTO cannot be held responsible for the inappropriate use of these training tools. Always adapt training tools to your aims, context, target group and to your own skills! These tools have been used in a variety of formats and situations. Please notify SALTO should you know about the origin of or copyright on this tool.

Tool overview

This tool is for

Large group (25-30 and more) divided into smaller groups according with different criteria proposed by Trainers.

and addresses

Intercultural Learning

Materials needed:

To make the metaphor work effectively it would be great to provide participants with kitchen stuff and simple food ingredients, which may be useful to break the ice during the discussion and for the final presentation of the "top tips".


1 h.30

Behind the tool

The tool was created by

Team of trainers of the TC Faith & Dialogue Training Course by Salto Cultural Diversity in 2007

The tool has been experimented in

Faith & Dialogue Training Course by Salto Cultural Diversity in 2007

The tool was published to the Toolbox by

Barbara Giovanna BELLO (on 28 September 2007)

and last modified

17 December 2008

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