News From the Kitchen
As part of the local ReFresh Project, Liberty’s Kitchen is conveniently located in the same building as the Broad St. Whole Foods Market (WFM). WFM shows its support of the Liberty’s Kitchen mission by purchasing our salad dressings (like the Green Goddess dressing) for the salad bar and employing some of our graduates.
During the culinary tier of the Youth Development Program, which is the second week, Chef T. takes trainees on a tour around the store to teach them about how supermarkets organize their products and how to make smart grocery-purchasing decisions. She taught us about product placement and a few other “tricks of the trade” that supermarkets use to encourage us to buy more. We saw that in the cheese section, they accompany the cheese with fruit, olives, and wine, which “suggestively sells it to you.”
In addition to showing us some ways in which supermarkets market their foods, Chef T. also taught us some ways to save money while shopping. For example, we learned that it is more economical to buy a whole melon, not the pre-cut and packaged containers (it also reduces waste from the disposable containers). I personally noticed a sale on the bunches of kale and saved money by choosing the bunches over the cut, washed, and packaged bags of kale. You can also save a few dollars by buying dry ingredients, like grains and legumes, from the bulk section. Bringing your own bags will get you a small discount as well – and it’s a simple way to reduce waste. Last, we learned about distinguishing fruits from vegetables, herbs from spices, and so much more.
I enjoyed the mini field trip and learned many facts and tips from Chef T.
–Posted by Miriam Teller, Development Intern
On Monday we shared a special day at the café with Event Pros Take Action (EPTA). EPTA is an organization that brings together professionals from the events industry to volunteer in different communities around the country. It is the third year in a row that we had the opportunity to meet with members of this organization for an impactful and uplifting program.
We were all split into small groups and went around to five different workshops, each lead by a different volunteer from EPTA. In each workshop, we focused on different ways to work towards success and cultivate personal growth.
Here is a list of my main takeaways from the day:
- Goals should be challenging to accomplish, but ultimately attainable. Make your goals specific so that you can track your progress and stay on the path towards achieving them. With reaching any goal, “consistency builds credibility,” which leads to improvement and success. — Jack Weiner and David Lombardo, Business workshop
- A three step plan for success: first, figure out what you love to do; second, get really good at it, third, figure out how to get paid for it. — Anna Zilinskas and Bobby Dutton, Social Media workshop
- Seeing certain experiences as challenges, not problems, means that we can take them on and succeed; we can still achieve our goals by staying strong and positive. –Dana Stiles and Harold Baily, Overcoming Adversity workshop
- Wherever you are, you can find a moment to close your eyes, breath, and meditate. — Jennifer Dutton, Health and Wellness workshop
- Baking requires focus and precision, which are two important characteristics in accomplishing any goal — Jon Petrie and Erin Schrepfer, “Christmas in July” Pastry workshop
Overall, the day had strong messages about how to stay positive and passionate, both personally and professionally. It was a time for everyone to reflect on their personal growth and focus on their goals for post-graduation from Liberty’s Kitchen.
— Posted by Miriam Teller, Development intern
Celebrations Lunch begins every Friday at 3 PM with a loud “woo woo!” from everyone in the room.
I’m Miriam, a new Development intern, and last Friday was my first full day here at Liberty’s Kitchen. Sitting with everyone at the Celebrations Lunch was a great way for me to end my first day. During that short time, program participants showed how much they enjoy being a part of LK and look forward to coming to work every day.
The lunch started back in January as a way for the participants to celebrate their accomplishments from the week. The program has gone through a revamp (more on that soon!) and staff members wanted to incorporate more structured time for positive feedback. Participants from both the Youth Development Program and the Youth Leadership Program are invited to join the lunch, along with many members of the staff.
Ms. D started the lunch by declaring the week a “thumbs up week” and telling everyone to pat themselves on the back. Everyone stepped up last week and worked extra hard to fit their training into a short (post-July 4th) week – they asked good questions and showed thoughtfulness in lessons. In addition to reflecting on the past few days, they also discussed the advances they will make in the coming week. This week, the Foundations group will move to the “back of the house,” the back of the house will move to the front, and others will move on to their externships.
Many individual participants received shoutouts from their peers and staff for pushing through difficult tasks in the kitchen and improving in their conversational skills. The participants also thanked the staff at LK for giving them the chance at success.
I look forward to the next Celebrations Lunch and hearing what new accomplishments everyone makes this week.
-Posted by Miriam Teller, Development Intern
We love our schools, and they love us! St. Andrews recently thanked Mr. Wendell for bringing them delicious meals every day, as he will now be a trainer in our School Nutrition Program!
“Mr. Wendell is beloved. We are excited that he is being promoted to trainer at Liberty’s Kitchen because he is so great at what he does. We will miss our daily moments with him. The Tadpoles made him a card and dessert to say thank you. We welcome Mr. Larry as our new delivery driver. We are very happy with our food provider. We get all forms of nourishment from our relationship with Liberty’s Kitchen!”- St. Andrews School
Mr. Wendell is an integral part of our operation here at Liberty’s Kitchen, as he has been with us for a long time providing meals to our schools. His promotion to trainer in our School Nutrition Program is a well-deserved step and we are so excited to see what he can do to expand SNP!
Here he is with Tallie, a St. Andrews student and Liberty’s Kitchen family member (Her dad, Seth, is our Director of Social Enterprise!)
We love providing nutritious meals to all of our schools every day, and bringing children of all ages food they might not have access to otherwise. This summer, we’ll be participating in the USDA Summer Food Service Program to continue delivering healthy meals to local children while school is out of session. Stay tuned for more updates from SNP!
– Posted by Hana Rabin, Development Intern