Culinary Training Program for Adults with Disabilities to start in April at Food Bank of Delaware in Milford
March 6, 2023
In partnership with the Delaware Restaurant Association and Delaware Department of Labor, classes for the Food Bank of Delaware’s new Kitchen School program will begin on Monday, April 10 at the organization’s Milford branch.
This new program offers free specialized training designed to provide employment opportunities for adults with disabilities in the food service and hospitality industries. The 12-week curriculum has been developed to include group instruction and individualized training in the Food Bank’s industrial kitchens. Students will spend eight weeks in the Food Bank’s industrial kitchen; an additional four weeks will be spent transitioning to permanent employment through on-site job coaching.
The first cohort of students graduated from the program at the Food Bank’s Newark facility in January.
“We are so excited to offer this program to residents of Kent and Sussex Counties,” said Food Bank of Delaware President and CEO Cathy Kanefsky. “Our pilot cohort in Newark was a success, and we are ready to change even more lives throughout our state. Everyone deserves a chance for success, and this program provides a path forward for a population that wants to work, is excited to work and can be a contributor to the workforce in a big way.”
The Food Bank’s professional chef instructors and job coaches will:
- Train students to enter food-service workplaces
- Teach students kitchen safety
- Provide hands-on cooking skills training
- Teach sanitation procedures
- Provide students an opportunity to earn a ServSafe® Food Handler Certification.
Staff will also provide instruction in soft skills and employer expectations using national industry-based guidelines and curriculum. Students will receive support and develop an individualized plan needed to enter a workplace, including transportation options.
Kitchen School staff will assist students in finding partner employers whose needs match student strengths and help the transition into a permanent workplace. Additionally, Kitchen School staff will provide support to students and employers for at least one year after graduation.
Thanks to a generous start-up grant from the Delaware Department of Labor as part of their TRAIN (Today’s Reinvestment Around Industry Needs) program, there is no cost to students to attend the program. To apply online or learn more, visit www.fbd.org/thekitchenschool.