Manq’a is an educational initiative that empowers at-risk youth through food education in culinary schools and cafeterias.
Manq’a Cafeterías y Escuelas de Cocina establishes culinary schools and cafeterias in areas of Bolivia and Colombia suffering from malnutrition and high rates of poverty. The schools train and educate students in food service operations such as managing cafeterias and catering services as well as in actual food production. Since launching two years ago, Manq’a has opened eleven schools and trained more than 1,000 young people.
Manq’a teaches the basic principles of nutrition and cooking to at-risk youngsters, empowering them with training and work experience. The program not only benefits the students, but also the communities in which it operates. By offering food services and products to locals, the schools and cafeterias improve health conditions and access to quality food. Manq’a also benefits local producers and farmers by providing a source of respectful and profitable commercial relations.
Why you should care
Approximately two billion people suffer from micronutrient deficiencies, and 13% of Latin American youth are unemployed. By providing access to technical training, Manq’a offers young students in impoverished areas the opportunity to develop skills which are needed in a growing industry. At the same time, its cafeterias encourage healthy eating and make use of nutritious, local ingredients, helping to improve the health and economy of local communities.