A Mutual Partnership Filling Cafeteria Jobs While Providing Greater Confidence to Members of the Local Special Needs Community
On November 30, 2018, Nutri-Serve Food Management was honored by the Jewish Family and Children’s Service of Southern New Jersey (JFCSSNJ), for their partnership in placing special needs adults in school food service jobs. Nutri-Serve has placed adults from this program in more than 20 school districts in New Jersey. Nutri-Serve is currently serving 89 districts, this was an appealing opportunity for Nutri-Serve who currently employs more than 1,200 people throughout the state and is always looking for kind-hearted and reliable candidates.
The greatest challenge in this endeavor was safety, as kitchens are filled with equipment that requires proper training. The JFCSSNJ program was appealing for Nutri-Serve because of the support it provides its special needs members as they transition to a new job. A trainer, certified in special education, from the JFCSSNJ supervises the training of the special needs employee in the Nutri-Serve school cafeteria. The familiarity of the trainer helps the new employee adjust to a new location, interact with the cafeteria team, and learn the day-to-day routine. The trainer remains present until the new special needs employee is comfortable and shows an understanding of his or her new position. The trainer continues to check in with the employee and food service director to make sure the relationship is successful for all participants.
Barbara Abrams of JFCSSNJ explains the benefit of finding jobs for these special needs workers. “Once our employees start working and truly feel like they belong in their workplace, confidence increases, self-reliance increases, many of them become self-sufficient.”
We look forward to a continued partnership with JFCSSNJ and enjoy seeing members of the special needs community continue to grow with Nutri-Serve!