Steepletown Neighborhood Services

Kitchen Sage Training Continues to Expand

It is a goal of Chef Karen to further expand the Kitchen Sage program this year to include more participants with disabilities.   Determined to put Kitchen Sage’s vision further into practice, i.e. “food is the language we all speak”, Chef Karen has tirelessly researched and built a new curriculum, and created practices and safety protocols that will allow students with any form of disability to engage with Kitchen Sage training. 

Another catalyst for Chef Karen to expand the Kitchen Sage training came from the Director of the Bureau of Services for Blind Persons.  Hearing about Camp Kitchen Sage last summer, the BSBP Director called Chef Karen to ask about offering training for clients of this organization. After a few meetings early in the year and much preparation, the first low-vision participant, Gabby, started two weeks ago. Even with extensive preparation, this type of training is new for Kitchen Sage, so Gabby gets to help guide and shape the program for future low vision participants. 

Gabby is 19 years old, a recent high school graduate, and is trying to navigate what comes next. She is interested in attending college someday and yet needs time and experience to determine what she wants to do in life.  Like many young people, her current goal is to establish financial and personal independence. She works part time at a donut shop and is hoping to get a full-time job in a restaurant.  That journey starts at Kitchen Sage. After her training with Chef Karen at Kitchen Sage, Gabby will be placed with a restaurant partner for further training and eventually a full-time job! 

WIth Gabby’s guidance, the kitchen has been updated with adaptive equipment that allows her to move confidently and safely through her work at Kitchen Sage.   These include a talking scale, large font/braille measuring cups, and a work-bench mounted magnifying glass for cutting with a knife.  For today,  you can find Gabby at Kitchen sage with something sweet baking in the oven and Ellie Goulding on the speakers!

Mark Frens

Mark Frens

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