Create Common Good expands into Canyon County, partners with new charter school

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by Savannah Cardon, Idaho Press

CALDWELL — To expand food service training and job placement programs in the Treasure Valley, Boise-based nonprofit Create Common Good partnered with Caldwell’s new charter school, Elevate Academy.

Create Common Good provides skills training and job placement programs for people with barriers to employment. Whether they have disabilities, are refugees, veterans, former inmates or women escaping domestic violence, Create Common Good’s services allow people to learn hands-on skills needed for jobs in food service.

“We’re thrilled, we can’t wait to get started,” said Erin McCandless, director of development and community relations for Create Common Good.

Create Common Good will operate out of Elevate Academy’s commercial kitchen beginning mid-August, just after the new charter school opens. The programs will take place after traditional school hours for anyone over the age of 18, according to McCandless.

The training program will be similar to the one in Boise, which takes place over eight weeks and focuses on the basics of food service — food safety, sanitation, recipe preparation, cross-contamination and more. Once a person completes the eight-week training, Create Common Good will offer a three-month job placement support service. The nonprofit has a 90 percent job placement rate.

“We know we are getting people to sustainable employment,” McCandless said.

The charter school, created by co-founders Monica White and Matt Strong, began with the vision of becoming an “open door” school capable of sharing its resources, White said.

“Part of the mission has been we want to be the true definition of a community school,” White said. “We’re just really excited to bring that opportunity to families in Caldwell.”

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