WASHINGTON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today, Martha's Table launched a new Community Kitchen program that will provide five aspiring food business owners with access to its state-of-the-art commercial kitchen facility. Martha's Table, a nonprofit organization committed to fostering community and advancing a more equitable D.C., has organized the program in partnership with the Latino Economic Development Center’s (LEDC) Food Venture Initiative (FVI) to support the growth and development of business owners of color who either work or live in Ward 8.
In addition to access to a best-in-class kitchen, Martha's Table and the LEDC Food Venture Initiative will provide comprehensive training, resources, and mentorship to help the entrepreneurs build and scale profitable and sustainable food businesses in the competitive industry.
“At Martha's Table, we believe in investing in our neighbors so they can fulfill their highest aspirations,” said Tiffany Williams, CEO of Martha’s Table. “Through our partnership with LEDC, we are thrilled to support promising business owners in Ward 8 as they build and scale profitable and sustainable food businesses. Advancing entrepreneurship is a proven way to close the wealth gap and accelerate economic mobility.”
Through this program, the next generation of food entrepreneurs will have the opportunity to expand their reach to serve more customers and establish a foundation for long-term success.
"We are excited to partner with Martha's Table in launching the Community Kitchen initiative," said Alexandra Samaniego, Small Business Development Program Manager at LEDC. "Through this program, we are confident that aspiring food entrepreneurs will hone their business acumen and experiment in new ways in the kitchen, while also developing the skills required to create sustainable and profitable food businesses that could change the landscape of economic development and food service in some of D.C’s most promising communities."
In total, five entrepreneurs will participate in the inaugural cohort and will begin in the coming months. The first business leaders to be announced include:
Gesenia Corea, Side Dish Queen
A private chef in the Washington region, Corea specializes in meal prep, in-home chef services, and catering for parties and corporate events. Corea focuses on healthy, clean, and gut-friendly food preparation, with a strong emphasis on convenience. She aspires to build a meal prep service that serves the DMV and beyond and to give back to the community through training and educating high schoolers on healthy cooking.
Yessica Guerra, Los Quesos
Guerra's business, Los Quesos, specializes in pupusas and other Central American specialties. Guerra, a 2002 FVI LEDC graduate, is a Ward 8 resident and business owner dedicated to promoting Central American cuisine in the local community through meal delivery and catering services.
Christa and Terry Joyner, Mamma Tee's Kitchen
Operating a catering and meal prep business, the Joyner duo, who are residents of Ward 8, bring their passion for cooking and family values to their culinary endeavors. Their menu features a wide range of dishes prepared with fresh, locally sourced ingredients.
For more information about the Martha's Table Community Kitchen program, visit marthastable.org/communitykitchen.
About Martha's Table
At Martha’s Table, we have one purpose: to help our neighbors build power and create possibility. A nonprofit organization based in the Hillsdale neighborhood of Washington, D.C, Martha's Table supports strong and healthy communities. Four decades ago, we opened our doors to children in need of a safe place and a warm meal after school. Over the years, we have evolved to meet the changing needs and growing aspirations of our communities, including by expanding our programming to include education, food access, economic mobility, youth engagement and emotional wellness. Today, the work at Martha’s Table is rooted in place-based best practices and deep community investments. To learn more, visit www.marthastable.org.
About the Latino Economic Development Center (LEDC) Food Venture Initiative (FVI):
The LEDC FVI is dedicated to providing comprehensive training and resources to aspiring food entrepreneurs, with a focus on developing their business knowledge and skills, enabling them to build and grow successful food businesses. Through mentorship and networking opportunities, they aim to foster a supportive community of successful food business owners who can continue to grow and thrive while promoting local food culture and contributing to the local economy.