In America, we have a whole bunch of child labor laws to make sure that little kids don’t get put in dangerous situations. For the most part, people agree with these laws and abide by them without much complaint. Sure, we make our kids do chores around the house and such, but for the most part we don’t require them to do any of the really heavy-duty stuff.
Evidently, Amsterdam missed out on the whole abolition of child labor movement. In one restaurant, they’re putting the kids to work, making them cook and serve adults. The restaurant isn’t quite as oppressive and illegal as you might think. In fact, “adorable” is a more appropriate word. At Kinderkookkafe, adorable little kids run around the kitchen where they bake cookies, make pie, and pancakes.
I’ll go ahead and admit right now that I’m no Dutchman, but I’m wagering that “Kinderkookkafe” translates loosely into “Child Cook Café.” Kinderkookkafe is a place where parents can take their kids, drop them off, and then return later to dine on the meals they create. So, it’s less like a sweat shop and more like a day care where they teach kids how to cook.
Not only do the kids do the cooking, but they also act as waiters, busboys, cashiers, and washers. The basic idea is to teach kids how to be responsible and helpful by cultivating that behavior in a fun and child-friendly environment.
There are a few restrictions, luckily. The minimum age that children have to be in order to work at Kinderkookkafe is 8, so you won’t see any toddlers trying to handle an electronic mixer or anything. Additionally, the children are monitored by a minimum of 2 adults at all times, and you can bet your bottom dollar that the kitchen implements are all rounded, child-friendly devices that are about as harmless as a wet noodle.
This place would raise a few eyebrows here in the States, but it really can’t be that bad. It’s a place where kids can be creative and learn important life lessons, and their parents get to reap the benefits of their kids slaving over a hot stove all day. What’s not to like?