Students will develop culinary knowledge and practical skills needed to be career–ready for entry level culinary prep positions, including sanitation, safety, knife skills, use of small and large equipment, varied food preparation, nutritional values, receiving and storage, management, and employability skills.
Teaching Values and Committment
We provide kids and clients a healthy learning environment that supports committment in a team setting as well as fostering family values.
Providing our students and clients the best opportunity to win in life is very important to our program and organization. These life skills will help are young adults thrive at home.
Career development for our youth
Giving our youth an opportunity to succeed in their career is one of the many reasons this program was created.
A Fresh Approach to Food & Education
Griffith’s Kitchen program utilizes culinary arts as a way for our kids and their families to express themselves all the while providing an innovative outlet to help kids showcase their talent and learn skills needed to live a healthy life. Oh, and everyone loves good food too.
Make a Difference
Griffith Centers for Children, Chins Up has maintained it’s commitment to helping families thrive through adverse conditions. But we cannot do it alone. Your support will help families move forward through troubling times and have a major impact our youth.
Become a Partner
Our community partners play an important role in the success of our programs as well as providing the support needed to help our youth succeed.
We offer support for our foster families by providing cooking classes to help you support the growth of our young children. Classes ranging from knife skills to preparing balanced meals.
Our youth could use as many role models and mentors as possible. If you have a passion for giving back to your community let us know. We would love to hear from you.
Chef Page (Cornelius Page) learned the basics of cooking from his father, mother, and maternal grandmother. He was formally trained in culinary arts via USAF military assignments, and later by continuing education at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York. Some other jobs in the industry via employment with Sodexo USA include Chef positions at The Center for Creative Leadership, The Colorado Springs School, Aspen Music Festival and School, and the World College in New Mexico. He has worked under the tutelage of a host of culinary professionals, stateside and abroad – and brings a wealth of knowledge to our youth due to his travels. His vast experience enables him to truly embrace the role of teacher, and directs the operation from a place of teamwork – by bringing everybody along so that the operation does not miss one single beat in his absence. He doesn‘t miss much, and will call out any infraction...large or small in order to make every moment a teachable one. He oversees the entire culinary competition, selecting and managing the local chefs, judges, and contestants. Lastly, his most “fulfilling” job has been working with youth at GCC and serving our clients and staff, which he sees as a big family. His famous quotes are “Food builds community” “Food provides therapy“.
Chef Mike (Michael Sundstrom) was self–taught in the culinary arts. He has stints as Manager of Idaho Springs and Silverthorne Colorado Burger King restaurants. Other notable experience includes two years as a Sous Chef at Keystone Resort, where he produced food for more than 700 daily during the peak time of ski season. Along with various other cook jobs, to include a head trainer position at Gunther Toody‘s, where he trained all personnel when new stores opened, Mike brings valuable experience to the team. He co–founded the Griffith Centers Culinary Program, and currently provides the bulk of the hands–on training for our client workers. Mike has been employed with GCC since Jan 2001, and when he is called upon to manage the operation, he does it seamlessly. Just as important, Mike once had dual jobs with GCC. While working in the kitchen, he doubled as a Youth Treatment Counselor.
Chef Izzy (Israel Velez), came with a varied background, to include short order cooking, restaurant service, geriatric care food service, military concessions, and Puerto Rican food truck experience when living in Miami years ago. When Izzy started with us, he was employed as the lead cook with a Senior Living Center in Colorado Springs. His extremely structured cooking techniques based on feeding the elderly plays a significant role in working with youth because he insists that they follow recipes, and if they stray, he‘s right there to redirect. Izzy initially started with GCC in early 2017, but after two plus years, he left for an executive chef position at Sierra Place in Pueblo, while still employed with the aforementioned Senior Living Residence...a true testament that he is not afraid of work. Fortunately for us, he returned to GCC after being gone for 4 months, and has now been back with us for more than a year...which makes us better than ever. We are grateful to have him on the team.
News & Events
Keep up with all of our news and events. Stay up to date with the latest on our student success in our program.
Jacob and Ella Harrington have been a licensed foster home with GCC since 2017. The Harrington's are a young professional couple that came to us in 2017 wanting to do foster care as well as adoption. Ella has a doctorate degree in occupational therapy and Jake is a...
Trevor and Heather have been part of our agency since February of 2019. They are a warm, enthusiastic couple that have a heart for teenage girls. While many foster homes, especially those with the end goal of adoption, focus on younger aged children, the...
The Griffith's Kitchen 10th Anniversary Celebration will be held on November 1, 2020 and will be live streamed to the public.
How Can We Help You?
7am – 8pm
Office: (719) 636-2122
Fax: (719) 327-2044
17 Farragut Ave
Colorado Springs, CO 80909