|Foundry’s building is a valuable asset for ministry. For years we have looked for ways to use this space for collaborative community. We have shared space with organizations like DC Books to Prisons and Pathways to Housing so their outreach workers can better address the needs of prisoners and our unhoused neighbors. |
But we were also interested in using our space to support job creation activities. An opportunity emerged last fall when I was connected with the DC Department of Small and Local Business Development that was helping groups looking for commercial kitchen space.
The group now connected to Foundry is Holiday Thyme, founded by Nicole Sanders and Monica Cole, professional chefs and food enthusiasts with over 30 years of global culinary experience. They started the effort initially as a pop-up for holiday catering to support a friend, but it evolved into an incubator, training mostly minority women. Holiday Thyme builds skills and experience to help their chefs excel in corporate kitchens or their own businesses.
Their search for a facility in the D.C. area where they could begin their work found most spaces crowded and expensive. A contact at The Potter’s House café/bookstore put them in touch with me and Foundry.
We met, they explained their mission, goals and need, which I found compelling, the sort of job creation activity we were looking to support. In sharing those goals with Pastor Ginger and the Foundry staff we determined the group was a great match especially given our goals emerging from the Journey to Racial Justice.
We’ve now shared space with Holiday Thyme for their Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter efforts, and so far, the results are both positive and delicious! I close with the words of Nicole Sanders from Holiday Thyme:
“Our relationship with Foundry has been essential to helping us build a stable foundation for our business while supporting minority chefs and line cooks in the process… Having a dedicated space that is more reasonably priced…allows us to directly invest more money into the education and edification of our staff. We could not have [begun] this project without your support.”
We continue to look for opportunities to leverage all we have to create beloved community. Let us know of other efforts Foundry can explore for partnerships. We often say our building is in ministry 24 hours a day, partnerships like these help us steward that gift in fruitful ways.