When Teresa Goines was a juvenile corrections officer, she witnessed how a system of incarceration sets young people up for failure. It does not, for instance, provide incarcerated youth with support after serving their sentences and, as a result, many ask to return to detention instead. To help kids build a more stable life, Goines founded San Fransisco’s Old Skool Café, a faith-based, violence-prevention supper club program that supports youth impacted by the foster care system, violence or incarceration. There, she trains young people in different areas of hospitality and teaches them life skills like opening a bank account, writing job application letters, using credit cards and how to best present in a job interview. Youth enter the program, move throughout different jobs (and can even add their own family recipes to the menu) to eventually work their way up to management positions. This alternative approach has seen participants go on to study at university, buy houses and embark on meaningful careers. Learn more about the program at Civil Eats.
Image courtesy of Old Skool Café