Kitchens for Good (KFG) is a nonprofit that was founded in 2014 on the belief that all food has power and all people have potential. KFG operates a 20-month certified apprenticeship program that equips individuals with the knife skills and life skills to break the cycle of poverty and launch meaningful careers in the culinary, baking, and hospitality industries. Apprentices–overcoming histories of incarceration, homelessness, and foster care–hone their culinary skills while upcycling rescued food into nutritious meals for hungry San Diegans. KFG fights food waste by partnering with local farmers and wholesalers to collect cosmetically imperfect and surplus fruits and vegetables. Together, KFG’s culinary apprentices and community volunteers glean, chop, and upcycle this perfectly edible food into wholesome meals. In partnership with local food assistance organizations, KFG distributes these meals throughout San Diego to people without access to affordable, nutritious food. This program engages apprentices, who encountered hunger themselves, in a daily opportunity to give back during their culinary training. Through a proven apprenticeship model, the program trains apprentices with industry-informed curriculum, places them into jobs, and then tracks, mentors, and supports them as they progress along a career path and become self-sufficient.
In just 5 years of operation, KFG has enrolled over 400 apprentices and maintained an 85% post-graduation employment rate, 81% of whom received a raise or promotion within 18 months of completing the workforce training. In addition, 238,765 pounds of food were rescued and prepared into approximately 478,715 meals. This year, KFG has shifted resources to meet the increased need for food assistance brought on by COVID-19 with the goal of producing an additional 288,000 meals and training 150 apprentices for careers by next year. Thanks to the support of donors, volunteers, and committed staff, KFG continues to positively impact the San Diego community while ramping up efforts to meet critical needs. For more information on KFG programs, events, and how to donate, please visit: https://kitchensforgood.org/