First Graduate of the YWCA NSW program Community in the Kitchen, Jackson Morrow (right), 21, from Lismore pictured with Tashi Matthews, 16, of Lismore who is is just starting her hospitality training.
First Graduate of the YWCA NSW program Community in the Kitchen, Jackson Morrow (right), 21, from Lismore pictured with Tashi Matthews, 16, of Lismore who is is just starting her hospitality training. Mireille Merlet-Shaw

Pulse Cafe gets fresh new training

THE aromas of delicious food met guests at a graduation ceremony for two youngsters at Lismore's Pulse Cafe yesterday.

Jackson Morrow and Kayrenia Kelly are the first graduates of the Community in the Kitchen program run by the YWCA, which aims to place disadvantaged or at-risk young people into training in the hospitality industry.

Both Jackson and Kayrenia have completed a Certificate II in hospitality at Wollongbar TAFE and have found full-time work as cooks at Pulse, where they did the work experience module of their training.

Jonny Iuso, senior manager at the Northern Rivers YWCA, said 12 young people had been chosen for the program, which used the YWCA's industrial kitchen.

The next round of candidates had started the 12-week course, she said.

Funding for the training program came from the Newcastle Permanent Charitable Foundation, which contributed nearly $37,000.

Foundation chairman Michael Slater said it had provided more than $260,000 to community groups in the Northern Rivers since it was established in 2004.

The kitchen scheme helped raise participants' self-confidence and provided them with skills and discipline, Mr Slater said.

They were also helped to become job-ready through the physical experience of working at a cafe – and they had the piece of paper to prove it, he said.

While Kayrenia was unable to attend the ceremony yesterday, Jackson spoke eloquently to the guests about his experience.

As to his future, Jackson said he would “definitely be staying in food”, adding half-jokingly that he may even be able to take over the management of Pulse one day.

 

JACKSON’S TIPS

Favourite dish: Nachos

His secret: onions, chilli, garlic and capsicum, dry and fresh herbs added at different stages to achieve different ‘strand’ of flavour from the same ingredient.

“Go with it, feel it, taste it and add the love.

“Never trust a skinny cook.”

 

TASHI’S TIPS

Favourite dish: Pesto fettuccini

Her secret: fresh pesto and good quality parmesan cheese.

“And make sure you don’t undercook the pasta.”



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