Mandala Kitchens offers free or low-cost 6 week culinary training programs to anyone wishing to develop food service skills in order to get a job in a commercial setting/kitchen.
While the program is open to everyone, there is an emphasis on providing the training for those who have difficulties finding and/or keeping jobs: unemployed/underemployed, formerly homeless, formerly incarcerated individuals, undocumented individuals and youth.
Scholarships may be available to help defray or cover the cost of training.

Program Description:
The Mandala Kitchens Program will explore the practical and theoretical aspects of culinary arts, with an emphasis on the practical so that individuals can be in a better position to get a job.
This includes ingredients, techniques, equipment, portion control, production procedures, and weights and measures. Some of the administrative aspects of food service will also be addressed: invoices/inventory, basic math, registers and food costs.

Program participants will learn::

  • Sanitation and food safety
  • Knife skills
  • Cooking principles
  • Stocks and sauces
  • Dining room management and service
  • Written and verbal communication skills
  • How to successfully work in a team environment
  • Analytical/problem-solving skills

The training will also include a meditation/mindfulness component.

Upon successful completion of the program, graduates will be eligible for the exam for the New York City Department of Health Food Handler's Certificate plus will receive job placement services.

For information or to be placed on the candidate list, please email contact information to:

Mandala Kitchens has also created a catering business to provide jobs for individuals (and later, the graduates) as well as support the on-going funding of the training.

We have been able to offer part-time employment to individuals who are formerly homeless, formerly incarcerated and political refugees.

As of March, 2016, we have begun to cater events.

We have catered events from 15 to 60 people

  • St. Mary's Episcopal Church Annual Meeting
  • Interfaith Assembly on Homelessness & Housing
  • The New York Theological Seminary—Micah Institute & Micah Clergy Table
  • St. Mary's Episcopal Church Summer Camp
  • All Souls Episcopal Church
  • Columbia University School of Social Work