The Salvation Army Honors A New Class Of Chefs On Friday

Friday, November 8, 2013

Graduates of The Salvation Army’s School of Culinary Arts will say, “Bon appétit,” at their graduation. Three students will graduate during a ceremony at the ReCreate Cafe at 800 McCallie Ave. at 2 p.m. on Friday.

The Chattanooga Salvation Army’s School of Culinary Arts, under the direction of Chef Terry Epps, is a life-changing, 12-week job training/internship program. Chronically homeless and low income persons learn the basic skills of food safety and meal preparation for entry into food services and re-entry into a life of worth and dignity.

The school’s mission is “teaching culinary skills, promoting self-respect, building self-sufficiency and strengthening the individual and the family.” 

The students learn food and kitchen safety and sanitation, proper use of equipment including basic knife skills, cooking theory and techniques, serving methods, kitchen operations and even environmentally friendly gardening. The program culminates with a two-week internship in a local restaurant.  Many students, however, secure employment by the time the internship phase begins and “intern” in their new jobs.

Through their lessons the students begin to impart their own style and creativity to their dishes, allowing them to move from simply making food to taking the first step toward a rewarding culinary career.

Since the first class in March 2010, 22 of 24 students have completed Culinary School classes, been “hatted” and received a certificate of accomplishment.  Moreover, 18 students found employment.  Currently, fifteen of those students still have jobs.  Two graduates, still involved in job search, are serving as volunteers in the kitchen and in special projects.  Five students who were homeless when classes began now live in permanent housing. 

While written and cooking tests throughout the semester are forms of measurement, and earning a college-level certificate is a great achievement, real results come with changed lives.  Observable changes in attitude, confidence, work ethic, personal accountability and over-and-above efforts to learn more and do more are noted by Chef Epps.

For most of their lives, his students have been told they won’t amount to anything. “I work to help them open up and bring out who they were when they were young and still had hope.”  The ability to “change their lives by changing their circumstances” must be recovered and encouraged, Mr. Epps said. 

So, basic cooking skills are learned and honed; self-esteem is built; individual creativity is encouraged; community awareness is engendered; success is rewarded; jobs are attained; lives are changed; and change has every hope of enduring.

The Salvation Army invites the public to meet the students, enjoy their culinary creations and learn more about this exciting program.


Recher Leads Local Food Service Firm To National Honor

Alan Recher, president and CEO of Chattanooga-based Five Star Food Service, received the vending and refreshment service industry’s top honor at the National Automatic Merchandising Association’s OneShow in Las Vegas where he was named the association’s Operator of the Year for 2015.  According to NAMA, the Operator of the Year Award recognizes an individual who exhibits ... (click for more)

Zaxby's To Hold Job Fair For New Ringgold Location

To hire for open positions at a Ringgold-area restaurant, Zaxby’s is hosting a job fair at the Poplar Springs Voting Precinct located at 470 Rollins Industrial Courtin Ringgold, Ga., on  Wednesday, May 13  from  12-4:30 p.m.  Set to open later this summer, the new Zaxby’s will be located at 6456 Alabama Highway in Ringgold. The new Zaxby’s location ... (click for more)

Circuit Court Jury Gives $20,599,000 Verdict In Favor Of Canyon Ridge Developers; Punitive Damages To Be Added

A Hamilton County Circuit Court jury on Thursday awarded $20,599,000 to the developers of Canyon Ridge on Lookout Mountain against a financial firm that allegedly secretly started working on a rival project. The jury also said the plaintiffs are due punitive damages. The amount will be set on Monday morning in the courtroom of Judge J.B. Bennett after each side gives 20-minute ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Loses Bicycle National Championships To Winston-Salem

After a three-year run, Chattanooga is losing the national championship bicycle races. Winston-Salem, N.C., has been selected to serve as the host city for the 2016 and 2017 Volkswagen USA Cycling Professional Road & TT National Championships. The 2016 Volkswagen USA Cycling Pro Road & TT National Championships will be held May 22-30. The nine-day event will combine the ... (click for more)

The Truth About The Rising Costs To East Ridge On The Fire Hall Property - And Response

Re:East Ridge Has To Pay Unexpected $428,000 On Bass Pro Shop Deal   H ere is the truth about this article.    One section of the article says: " Unknown to anybody on the council today, the agreement limited use of the land to a fire hall."     In a letter dated Dec. 15, 2010, Mayor Lambert asked TDOT officials to ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: I Know About Dowries

There is a lawyer in Kenya who wants to meet President Barack Obama very badly. He knows the President will visit Kenya in July and the noble, young lawyer, Felix Kiprono, is very sincere when he says he wants to marry the oldest of the Obama daughters, 16-year-old Malia. He became interested in Malia in 2008 and can proudly say he has dated no other women since then, it has just ... (click for more)