A critical part of our program and the development of our participants comes from the ability to work together as a team. Our Professional Development modules help participants learn conflict resolution, budgeting, ethics and teamwork. 

As part of the 12-week course, each participant works within the Professional Development Module to learn:

  • Monthly Budgeting

  • Working as a Team

  • Conflict Resolution

  • Respect and Communication

  • Time Management


Our Stone Soup team developed a 12-week basic Culinary Training Program, including a Food Handler Certification, as well as Food Production and Front of House training. Classes are small and offer individual coaching.

Participants in our culinary program gain a basic understanding of kitchen safety, fundamental cooking methods and techniques, kitchen and restaurant dynamics and their roles in the food preparation process. Our Chef Trainers design projects that trainees can accomplish to build self-confidence while they evaluate participant strengths and guide them in improving on perceived weaknesses. We also partner with other restaurants and catering facilities to offer additional training opportunities. 


At Stone Soup, we guarantee our clients have an enjoyable experience whether they are picking up a To Go meal or having an office lunch catered. We strive to take care of every need, anticipating what our clients want, so we’re ready to serve before the request is made. These are the principals we teach in the Customer Service module.

Program participants are guided through the pillars of customer service in the restaurant and hospitality industry. They learn how to consistently offer quality service in a genuine way. This involves treating both guests and fellow employees with respect and dignity. The end result is fostering customer loyalty in any business which they choose to work.


After finishing our 12 week program, all graduates enter the job placement network, an informal cooperative of Portland area caterers and restaurants. This network ensures our program participants will have ample opportunities for job interviews and job placements. Our staff continues to be in touch with all graduates, bringing them back to speak with current classes. This alumni network then ensures participants all have active mentors to help them through any challenges. 

We also network with local restaurant groups and catering operations to identify employment opportunities with the potential for more sustainable employment than corporate food service might initially offer. 

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