100 Days Selected Project for Criminal Justice

Pittsburgh is a bootstraps kind of town. Pittsburghers believe in hard work as the key to a better life. But what do you do when no one will give you a shot? What can you do when you can’t get a job? Bootstraps aren’t much use when you’ve got no boots. This is the position many people find themselves in when reentering society from jail or prison. Faced with a real possibility of homelessness, joblessness, and recidivism, the moment you’re released can be terrifying.

We have a revolutionary new program that doesn’t just set up ex-offenders for success, but catapults them into a career in Pittsburgh’s booming restaurant scene. We’ve designed an 8-week intensive, paid internship program for former inmates who have completed our flagship culinary training program to work directly under notable executive chefs. They will design and implement their own farm to table dinner for an audience of chefs, restaurateurs, and food writers. This process will provide a skill-building resume boost and the opportunity to connect with 50 of the most prominent movers & shakers in Pittsburgh’s food scene. Interns will learn to partner with farmers, negotiate with artisan food providers, write recipes, build a menu with an executive chef mentor, promote a private dinner with professional marketing staff, and take the reins to execute the dinner with help from a professional kitchen team. Completing this program will be hard work, with a huge payoff.

Visit www.ckpgh.org for information about how we prepare ex-offenders for this opportunity. The $5,000 award from Sprout Fund’s 100 Days of US will provide this life-changing internship to two CKP graduates as they return home from jail.

Project Leader/Applicant:

Tom Samilson from Pittsburgh (Downtown / Hill District)

Project Budget:


Related Links:

communitykitchenpittsburgh.org/ CKP’s Website
www.facebook.com/CommunityKitchenPittsburgh/ CKP’s Facebook page
twitter.com/CKitchenPgh CKP’s Twitter Page

Important Dates:

  • January 23: First day of internship. Our first intern is a recent CKP graduate named Emily. Our first employer partner is Scratch Food and Beverage. Our MOU is signed and we’re ready to roll!
  • March 20: Approximate date of private farm to table dinner, hosted by Scratch Food & Beverage