PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — In the heart of Hazelwood, the rhythm of progress and aroma of promise attracts a special team of budding professionals.
“This is CKP. That’s what we call the abbreviated version. Community Kitchen Pittsburgh,” said chef trainer Garland Richie.READ MORE: Pittsburgh Public Schools Announces 'Summer B.O.O.S.T.' Program To Address Pandemic Learning Gap
Richie showed KDKA’s Kym Gable around the kitchen. Community Kitchen is a non-profit organization powered by food and fueled by a passion to pay it forward.
Enrollment in the four-week culinary program is free to students who are accepted, many of whom face barriers to employment and challenges at home. The kitchen provides training and stability.
“If they have some obstacles in the background that may hinder them from giving 100 percent in class, we help them with that as well. Whether it be legal, homelessness, whether it be driving, we offer bus passes. As much as we can do,” said Richie.READ MORE: Westmoreland County Doctor Explains What Happens To Unused Coronavirus Vaccine Doses
Donor funding and revenue from some food sales help pay for the program. Meanwhile, the students make food that feeds the homeless and less fortunate in various community outreach organizations.
“When the meals leave out, these are for people that are hungry, less fortunate. So knowing that they’re depending on us, that’s a big difference,” said student Maya Wilson.
Student Delon Baskins said, “Outside of the program, I have lost friends and family. When I come here, it’s a good way to get away and be around a lot of people I love and care about.”MORE NEWS: Busing Woes Continue For Hundreds Of Pittsburgh Public Schools Students
The nonprofit just launched it’s student relief fund initiative. You can find out more about Community Kitchen Pittsburgh here.