The COVID-19 pandemic has caused business closures and layoffs across many industries and sectors throughout the Sacramento region, resulting in staggering layoff numbers and displaced jobs.
In response, the City Council approved last July the creation of a $10 million Workforce Recovery Program, which supported 29 workforce recovery efforts through local partners to provide job training, paid internships and job placement to aide city residents impacted by the pandemic.
One of these programs is the culinary arts program created by Fresher Sacramento. The program trains and pays five young adults, ages 18-23, who lost their jobs or had their culinary training halted in the food industry due to COVID-19. The participants work under the supervision and are trained by local Chef Patrick Mulvaney.
“Not only does this program provide participants with training in food preparation, but also in community engagement, marketing and the development of an innovation for neighborhood food security,” said Fresher Sacramento Founder and Executive Director Rabbi David Azen.
The participants of Fresher Sacramento’s program receive up to 30 hours a week for 12 weeks of paid work experience to serve as catering crew leads for the Meals for Meadowview Program, which creates and distributes healthier meal options for the neighborhood.
There are still two open spots left in this program, Azen said.
The Meals for Meadowview Program has served 50,519 meals to food insecure Meadowview neighborhood residents since May 2020.
“This is a win-win for the community,” said the City’s Workforce Development Manager Kriztina Palone, who leads the City’s Workforce Recovery Program. “The culinary program trains young adults who need job training and income during the pandemic while providing vital food resources to food insecure residents.”
Learn more about the City’s Workforce Recovery Programs on the City’s COVID relief website.