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Fifteen Foundation

Fifteen

Courtesy of Fifteen Foundation

The Fifteen Foundation selects disadvantaged youth to train for a year as an apprentice in the restaurant.

In 2002, British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver had an idea; he wanted to open a restaurant that would serve as a space to teach disadvantaged youth responsibility, determination and a strong work ethic. Documented in the TV show Jamie’s Kitchen, Fifteen was soon born.

Fifteen restaurant is owned wholly by Fifteen Foundation, and all profits made at the fine dining establishment are donated back to the foundation. Fifteen selects disadvantaged youth to train for a year as an apprentice in the restaurant under the watchful eye of 25 professional chefs who serve as mentors. The youth, ages 16 to 24, typically have issues in their lives that create barriers to education or employment. Oliver calls the restaurant a “social enterprise” that offers many young people a second chance.

Although Oliver used to work in the kitchen side-by-side with the apprentices, his role has changed to a trustee of the Foundation as the organization has expanded. The apprenticeship program has been so successful in London that Fifteen Foundation has also opened restaurants in Amsterdam, Cornwall and Melbourne.

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