WHAT WE DO
We provide a safe space where individuals can rediscover their self-worth and potential through the development of valuable job skills.
Through an 8-week training program, our trainees master the skills necessary to successfully work in the foodservice industry. Focusing on food safety, kitchen math, recipe preparation, kitchen sanitation, and beginning knife skills, we empower those we serve as they learn new skills and create a fresh start for themselves. At CCG, we serve individuals from all walks of life with varied backgrounds and experiences, this includes refugees, women escaping domestic violence, those overcoming barriers such as past incarceration, addiction and non-chronic homelessness as well as many others.
WHY WE ARE DIFFERENt
Our job training program is unique because:
- we work mainly with head-of-households
- our program is brief - 8-weeks
- our curriculum is designed for a broad scope of learners, especially ESL
- successful employment is our primary desired outcome
Further, we have developed a unique social enterprise model that leverages contributions and donations through revenues generated by our food production products and services. Business-to-business food production generates sustainable, repeatable revenue allowing CCG to continuously expand our job training program.
We are the only food based non-profit in the country using food production, and not catering or cafe as our social enterprise.
Our production customers include small food businesses working to grow their market, restaurants looking for production and labor solutions, and entrepreneurs looking to professionally develop their products for market.
As a result of the 2008 financial crisis, local entrepreneur, Tara Russell established “Common Ground,” a job and language skills training program serving refugees in Boise, Idaho. ”Simply put, we launched CCG to help people in need land on their feet, discover their potential and enrich their communities."
Over the years, the "Common Ground" job training programs included janitorial services, sewing, agriculture and cooking. In 2010, we rebranded as Create Common Good, positioning ourselves for growth in Boise and beyond.
Through a generous donation of land from Idaho Power and Eastwind Community Church, a farm training and employment site was established in Southeast Boise. The donated land was used as a 3-acre farm and provided an additional training tool for our trainees and helped us to narrow our focus to food and agriculture based training and employment.
In 2015, it became apparent that training in agricultural jobs often led to seasonal employment that did not accomplish our ultimate goal of helping others achieve self-sufficiency, and the tough decision to close the farm was made. Sharpening our focus to foodservice skills preparing individuals for work in a commercial kitchen has allowed to us prepare our trainees for true independence and self-sufficiency. Expanding our focus beyond refugees to anyone experiencing a barrier to employment as well as implementing our wholesale food manufacturing social enterprise has allowed to to serve our local community in an even more impactful way.
Our goal has been to build an empowerment model that could be used in any community. We are a passionate, business-minded organization with a dynamic, talented and rapidly growing team and we are looking forward to all that the future of Create Common Good holds in Boise and beyond.