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DCCK employee and graduate awarded scholarship to kick-start counseling career

Each yearwe  award  one outstanding DC Central Kitchen employee and graduate with our North  Star scholarship  to  help them reach new career goals.  This year, we were honored to recognize Manouchka Bolden, who enrolled at DC Central Kitchen in the fall of 2018 in search of one word – “change.”  

As a mother of six,  Manouchka  wanted to set a new standard for her children. “They’re the reason I came to DCCK,” she says, sharing what  she  can tell them today: “If I can go to school and go to work and never miss a beat, you can, too.”   

Since graduating from the Culinary Job Training program,  Manouchka  has carved out a path at DCCK, starting at the front desk and working her way to her current role as a Workforce Development Program Assistant. Every day, she  connects with and tracks the success of graduates, and she has taken on leadership of the program’s weekly Women’s Empowerment classes.  

With this scholarship,  Manouchka  plans to start coursework in counseling. “I want to be an advocate for women, especially those who have been abused or broken,” she says.  “I want to be a voice.”    

The annual North Star Award is given in honor of our long-time Culinary Job Training Director, Marianne Ali, who passed away in 2017 after a courageous battle with cancer. The award serves as a reminder of Marianne’s legacy and our commitment to supporting the continued growth and professional development of our graduates.

This year’s award was generously sponsored by The Stand Together Foundation.