Our mission is to advance economic equity in Oakland by providing educational training and hands-on support for aspiring chef entrepreneurs from refugee, immigrant, and low-income communities who seek to start their own food businesses. Oakland Bloom is dedicated to working within the community by collaborating with local nonprofits and businesses. Together, we aim to create programs that will lead to economic self-sufficiency and pathways to small business ownership.
Read on to learn more about our current and past programs:
In late 2015, Oakland Bloom partnered with the International Rescue Committee (New Roots), and launched our Food Entrepreneurship Training (FET) program, providing vocational jobs training with the end goal of our students starting a food business or getting placed in a new food service job. Oakland Bloom’s FET program finished with successful outcomes of advancing participants’ entrepreneurial goals, which in turn resulted in food handler safety certification, secured supplemental income, and higher quality employment for 96% of program participants.
OTK is a shared test kitchen + community food court + hands-on food training program that provides refugee and immigrant chefs with a creative, yet structured kitchen environment to develop cultural recipes and share their refined dishes with eaters in a low-risk commercial setting via Oakland Bloom’s monthly night market.
To learn more about this 3-month program, click here
CONSULTING SERVICES + MENTORSHIPS
Through our network of volunteer advisors and consultants, Oakland Bloom offers consulting services to immigrant, refugee, and low-income food entrepreneurs (who are working in new or existing businesses). In this way, we are also able to provide assistance to entrepreneurs-in-need who aren’t currently participating in our other programs.