The Mandala Kitchens Culinary Training offers free or low-cost 10 week Culinary Training programs to anyone wishing to develop food service skills in order to get a job in a commercial setting/kitchen.

While the program is open to everyone, there is an priority on providing the training for those who have difficulties finding and/or keeping jobs:
  • formerly homeless (MUST be in some form of stable housing prior to Training)
  • formerly incarcerated individuals
  • undocumented individuals
  • youth
  • substance use issues (MUST be sober & in some type of recovery program for at least 30 days prior to Training)
  • mental health issues (MUST be in compliance with a Doctor's Medical/Medication guidelines for at least 30 days prior to Training)
  • unemployed/underemployed
Scholarships may be available to help defray or cover the cost of training.

Program Description:
The Mandala Kitchens Program will explore the practical and theoretical aspects of culinary arts, with an emphasis on the practical so that individuals can be in a better position to get a job.

This includes ingredients, techniques, equipment, portion control, production procedures, and weights and measures. Some of the administrative aspects of food service will also be addressed: invoices/inventory, basic math and food costs.

In a mix of classroom, kitchen work, study & practice, the program will be an opportunity for individuals to learn the basics of the food service field.

Program participants will learn:

  • Sanitation & Hygiene
  • Kitchen Tools, Materials & Equipment
  • Knife Skills & Cuts
  • Mise en Place
  • Cooking Methods
  • Baking Basics
  • Team Work & Team Building

The training will also include a Meditation/Mindfulness/Life Skills component:

  • Self-Awareness
  • Communication
  • Responsibility
  • Self-care
    • Meditation
    • T’ai Chi
    • Yoga
    • Herbal Tea & Nutrition

Upon successful completion of the program, graduates will be eligible for the exam for the New York City Department of Health Food Protection Certificate plus will receive job placement services.

For information or to be placed on the candidate list, please email contact information to:

Training I

Training I


Training II


Training III