National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation Awarded a $4.5 million Grant

Today it was announced that the U.S. Department of Labor has awarded the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) a $4.5 million grant to launch a new training program for young adults who have been in the justice system and served time. This is the largest grant ever received by the NRAEF.
The program is called Hospitality Opportunities for People (re)Entering Society, or HOPES. The program will focus on few cities: Boston, Chicago, and the Richmond & Hampton Roads area in Virginia. HOPES will be run in conjunction with corrections departments, community-based organizations and state restaurant associations.
Participating correctional facilities will use NRAEF training guidelines to train inmates to enter the food service industry after their release and during parole. Once training is completed, the HOPES participant will be placed in a local restaurant and/or foodservice position. Also hospitality apprenticeships will be available to participants who want to further advance their careers through such training.
The NRAEF plans to have HOPES collaborate with its apprenticeship programs and Opportunity Youth, which targets youths who are out of school and unemployed. “We are honored to be part of a national effort to create positive employment opportunities for young adults involved with the justice system,” said Rob Gifford, President of the NRAEF in a statement. “The program fits perfectly with our mission to attract, empower and advance today’s and tomorrow’s restaurant workforce and is an excellent way for anyone seeking to get back on track to becoming a productive and responsible member of society.”
Previously we’ve discussed the shortage of restaurant industry workers and how McDonald’s, Walmart and other companies were trying different tactics to retain workers. Currently there are nearly one million open positions in the restaurant industry. The unemployment rate for formerly incarcerated people is several times higher than the unemployment rate for the general United States population. This program could be a great way of improving two problems with a single solution.
Sintel Systems offers complete omni-channel solutions such as the Direct-to-POS online ordering platform. This system allows restaurants of all sorts to have a custom, secure website and mobile app to support customer ability for placing orders on the go. Using our omni channel approach customers can order with an employee using a hand held device at busy drive thrus, order from a kiosk, order from their phone or order from a computer. If they prefer, they can even order inside the restaurant from staff at the counter. All transaction from devices are seamlessly sent to the kitchen display system (KDS). Kitchen staff stays completely in the know of customer orders and what order to cook them in. That’s the goal of omni channel POS, service is provided to the customer where they want it, how they want it.