The Organization: Root’s mission is to provide youth, ages 16 to 26, with a pathway to employment and financial independence. Through developing life and work readiness skills, youth leave Root prepared for success in the workplace.
Root’s long-term vision is to maximize youth opportunity through meaningful, skill-oriented employment; accompanying support services and coaching; and progress toward a living wage. Since 2017, Root has worked to expand employment and economic opportunities for young adults with barriers to success in Essex County, Massachusetts. Through an emphasis on food service training and targeted life-skills development, Root has built a Culinary Job Training Program, award-winning youth employment enterprises (Root Café, Catering by Root, and the HarborPoint event space), and most recently a new initiative to help address area food insecurity through youth-driven Community Catering. Youth trainees and alumni employees receive culinary instruction, life and professional skills development, financial literacy, and, as needed, support in completing high school and continuing education. To date, Root has graduated over 130 youth, generated more than $500,000 in organizational earned income, and prepared over 50,000 meals for those in-need. Through its enterprises, Root has created more than 25 transitional employment opportunities for young adults and continues to expand.
Root’s organizational core values include:
To learn more about Root, please visit: www.rootns.org.