The staff of Sodexo, Tulane University’s dining services provider, spent time Friday at Café Reconcile for the third annual communal breakfast for the café’s staff and alumni.
Café Reconcile is an establishment that provides food service training to youth in New Orleans. Travis Johnson, district executive chef of dining services at Tulane said participants often obtain work at dining venues on Tulane campuses after completing the program.
“Our managers really love to get out in the community and this is a great opportunity to come down and cook for the staff,” said Johnson.
“I don’t know where I would be if I didn’t come to this program.”
Jonas Stallworth, Cafe Reconcile participant
Sodexo’s goal for services and the work of the café make the partnership a good match.
“Our mission is to provide opportunity to talented young people who want to transform their lives,” said Café Reconcile executive director Gerald Duhon.
Sebastien Holmquest, Jeremy Robinson and Jonas Stallworth all of New Orleans, recently joined the Café Reconcile program.
“The experience has been great,” Robinson said. “This program shows you who you are and who you may want to be. This place gives you essentials that maybe you don’t experience at home.
They pray with you, they eat with you, and they support you. Support is the biggest thing.”
Café Reconcile uses the hospitality industry as a lens through which to teach practical skills, from the preparation of a meal to the art of listening.
“I don’t know where I would be if I didn’t come to this program,” Stallworth said.
Jamie Logan is a senior majoring in English and classical studies with a minor in psychology at Tulane University.