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Projects 2 People was born out of the realization that human trafficking is not only an international problem but a local one also. Far too often marginalized individuals are viewed as projects and objects to be “fixed.” The goal of Projects 2 People is to change the way that these individuals who have been exploited through human trafficking are worked with and provide opportunities to earn income without exploitation.
Due to the food culture in San Diego, specifically downtown, the culinary industry is a great way to provide lasting opportunity that creates income so individuals don’t fall back into forced exploitation. One large issue with attaining most jobs is that they require experience. The issue with this is the difficulty in gaining experience without attaining a job first. In order to break this “no job --> no experience, no experience --> no job” cycle we aim to provide not only training but hands-on involvement.
Projects 2 People will provide culinary training and operate a restaurant staffed by individuals who are in the program. This means that clients will have opportunity to be trained to work as servers, cooks, bakers, and managers while working in a paid position within the restaurant. Projects 2 People is not only providing education, but also maintaining a source of income. The goal is to not be dependent on donors, but rather maintain a more sustainable business model.
Along with the training and experience comes the value of the education provided. An objective of Projects 2 People is to become a known supplier of hardworking, educated, experienced employees; who because of our program will benefit any restaurant they end up working with.
One aspect of the food industry is the pervasive role it plays in larger cities. Projects 2 People is scalable and can provide education/experience in Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York, Boston, and Miami (along with many other major cities). This means that as one program/restaurant becomes successful, the opportunity to open another will be present. The demand for good experienced employees in the restaurant industry needs only to be met by a supply that Projects 2 People can help provide.