Father Joe’s Villages Residents to Showcase Culinary Skills at Taste of the Village on March 16

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Gourmet experience to provide glimpse into inner workings of homeless services provider
SAN DIEGO, February 22, 2017 – Last year, three residents at Father Joe’s Villages turned to the nonprofit’s Freddy Evarkiou Culinary Arts Program for job training on their journey toward self sufficiency. Now that those students have graduated from the program and moved on to culinary careers, the next class is gearing up to cater Father Joe’s Villages’ fourth annual Taste of the Village.
Father Joe’s Villages will give behind-the-scenes tours and treat guests to an evening of fine dining at the event on Thursday, March 16. Students from the Freddie Evarkiou Culinary Arts Program will prepare French country cuisine and serve partygoers atop Father Joe’s Villages’ building at 16th and Commercial streets.
“The food and views at Taste of the Village are incredible, but our purpose is much greater,” says Deacon Jim Vargas, president and CEO of Father Joe’s Villages. “There are thousands of men, women and children on our streets - we see potential in each and every one. Through events like this, we can help more people in our community achieve self-sufficiency.” 
At this year’s event, attendees will have the exclusive opportunity to hear first-hand success stories from people who found their path out of homelessness through Father Joe’s Villages’ services. Staff and board members will also mingle with guests and share stories over gourmet food and drinks.
The Freddie Evarkiou Culinary Arts Program began in 2002 to prepare people who are homeless for careers as chefs and culinary professionals. Students complete classroom and practical trainings and intern at local restaurants. They also receive help in preparing for interviews and job searching. 
All proceeds from Taste of the Village, sponsored by Banner Bank, will benefit Father Joe’s Villages work toward ending homelessness in our region, one life at a time. Tickets are $50 per person and can be purchased online. For more information about Father Joe’s Villages, visit neighbor.org
As one of San Diego’s largest homeless services providers, Father Joe’s Villages has been empowering people to achieve self-sufficiency for over 66 years. What started as a small chapel serving San Diego’s impoverished has grown into a cutting-edge provider of effective housing programs and services. Father Joe’s prepares up to 3,000 meals and works with more than 1,800 individuals every day — from infants and adolescents to adults and seniors. This includes over 200 children and over 200 military veterans. As an industry thought-leader, Father Joe’s offers solutions to address the complex needs of the homeless, regardless of age, race, culture or beliefs. The organization’s primary goal is to transform lives and end the cycle of homelessness for the nearly 8,700 homeless individuals in San Diego County. To this end they provide housing, healthcare, food, clothing, education, job training and child development in an internationally modeled “one-stop-shop” approach. This mission is made possible only through the efforts of compassionate staff, dedicated volunteers, and generous public and private donors. For more information, please visit: http://www.neighbor.org.