U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Xenia Mayor Marsha Bayless visited the HOPE Café in Xenia yesterday morning. Brown and Bayless toured the cafe and spoke with current and past apprentices participating in the program.
“Businesses like the HOPE Café provide participants with the skills and support to re-enter the workforce as competitive employees who are able to live independently,” said Senator Brown. “By providing tailored education programs for regional industry needs, we can ensure that all Ohioans are equipped with the skills for jobs of the 21st century.”
Through the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act of 2009, Hope Café received $123,985 in funding through the Community Action Partnership. Brown and Bayless were joined by HOPE Café Director Gale Hutchinson.
Hope Café opened in September 2009 as a small catering company to provide culinary skills and job training for homeless men and women to prepare them for jobs in the restaurant and service industries. Just two weeks ago, HOPE Café opened as a restaurant. When the apprentices graduate from the eight week program they receive assistance in finding jobs at local restaurants.
[While working in Ashland, this blogger visited Pump House Grille. It was developed by one of Ashland’s pastors (and, if memory serves, professor at Ashland College) to help homeless and low income individuals gain marketable skills. The food was quit good and the atmosphere very unique. The restaurant and related ministry outreaches are located in the abandoned F.E. Meyer Pump manufacturing building that was donate by its previous owner. Looking forward to visiting Xenia’s unique Hope Cafe.]