Back in June of last year, we received an email from Youth and Family Outreach (YFO), a nonprofit daycare and education facility located on Cumberland Avenue in Portland. They had discovered that they were in need of a kitchen update and were having trouble finding a contractor to execute the project. We immediately set up a meeting to see what we could do to help them out.
We met with their executive director and board president to get the low down on what they needed, their timeline; budget; all the nitty-gritty info that is gathered at the start of a project. During this initial meeting, we were very impressed with what we saw. Not the kitchen, which was in desperate need of an update, but the services that they were providing in this historic church setting and the work that a new kitchen would help them accomplish.
YFO was readying to launch their Families Matter program, which focuses on creating building blocks that families can use to create habits of eating healthy meals together. YFO’s Families Matter program was created to educate families how to prepare meals, shop and cook on a budget. Their goal is to carry over what the children are eating at YFO, to the home. Reducing food insecurity through education to ensure that their children are better prepared for school. All they needed was a larger, updated kitchen. We were honored to help.
We collaborated with the YFO team to come up with a plan of attack and get a schedule put in place, with a turn around time of about two weeks. A tall order but with a few nights and weekends and if everything goes just right.... we actually did it. We surprised the YFO crew and given the few issues that popped up (there are always issues) we even surprised ourselves.
Barrett Made also made a donation to the project and, as a result, YFO graciously allowed us to name the kitchen. Rob immediately knew he wanted to name the kitchen after his mom. The Polly Wilson Family Teaching Kitchen will continue to inspire and educate young people in portland just as Rob's mom instilled a passion for healthful cooking in him.
A job well done for an organization that is doing incredible work in our community every day. It was our pleasure.