The mission of DC Central Kitchen (DCCK) is to use food as a tool to strengthen bodies, empower minds, and build communities. DCCK Helps Fight Hunger Differently.
DC Central Kitchen was founded in 1989 by young nightclub manager Robert Egger. Frustrated by his volunteer experiences with traditional responses to hunger and homelessness, Robert pioneered a new model aimed at liberating people from the conditions of poverty.
Robert’s idea for a ‘central kitchen’ involved picking up wasted food (which people said was unwise), turning it into balanced meals for shelters and nonprofits (which people said was unsustainable), and using that process to train jobless adults in the culinary arts (which people said was impossible). Many believed Robert’s plan was idealistic. However, as he began to have success with his model, it became clear that it was simply ahead of its time.
Michael Curtin is the current CEO of DC Central Kitchen and focused on building the social venture portfolio that led to the organization doubling in size.
DCCK won the top national award for healthy school innovation, the Golden Carrot, and two White House Champion of Change Awards, as well as celebrated the graduation of its 100th culinary class and the opening of its 50th Campus Kitchen. DCCK successes have been featured by respected outlets like National Geographic, PBS NewsHour, the Atlantic, The Washington Post, The New York Times, Newsweek, and The Chronicle of Philanthropy.