Edmonton Bakery Gives Job Alternatives for Younger Folks: “It is a New Alternative” – Edmonton

A local bakery that grew out of a church in Old Strathcona will satisfy your sweet tooth while teaching life skills to teens.

TYPE TOP BAKERY is located in the Holy Trinity Anglican Church in Old Strathcona. Inside, three to four people work – under the guidance of a professionally trained baker – to handle various orders around Edmonton.

Clark Hardy is the founder and director of the Trinity Youth Project and TYP TOP BAKERY. He said the bakery was set up to help youngsters faced with employment and socio-economic barriers.

“I have worked as a youth outreach worker and found other youth employment programs [were not working for everyone]”Explained Hardy. “They couldn’t be there Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.”

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At TYP TOP, young people between the ages of 15 and 24 can either look for a job or volunteer in the business. Since the program began in February 2019, 60 young people have benefited from job opportunities.

“Some of these kids don’t have typical opportunities that other teens might have through school or other connections,” Hardy said.

“Here you can gain work experience, learn teamwork and a quick kitchen in an environment that understands your situation.”

The bakery fulfills impressive orders. Last year a church in Onoway ordered £ 200 shortbread and the Edmonton Christmas Market bought 70 dozen pretzels.

The teenagers’ baking also takes place in some of Edmonton’s most popular eateries such as BAIJU and The Grizzlar.

Shortbread from TYP TOP BAKERY.

Courtesy: Clark Hardy

“This is a professional bakery,” said Hardy.

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Dimitra Georgiadis, 23, has been in the bakery for almost two years and is currently working on completing her Red Seal to become a baker.

“We learned a lot. Difficult bread that I didn’t even know existed, ”said Georgiadis.

“There were other programs that I have participated in and they usually don’t take that long.

“I thought it was just temporary. I am glad that this is not the case. “

Georgiadis said she always dreamed of opening a bakery but wasn’t sure how to do that.

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“I wasn’t in a good position. I didn’t have a lot of money to go to school. I was really happy when [Clark] said he was going to open a bakery. “

She said the support the space offers goes beyond an employer-employee relationship.

“I had a problem with my rent and couldn’t pay it. They helped me pay my rent, ”she said. “It’s good to know that someone is there to help me when I need them.”

Treats from TYP TOP BAKERY.

Courtesy: Clark Hardy

Chef Kelsey Johnson, formerly at Duchess Bake Shop and Cafe Linnea, is at the forefront of baking.

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“Working with the kids and seeing how the kids’ moods change when they’re in the kitchen after a bad day. We work our way through, we listen to music, and we have fun, ”said Johnson.

“You feel good. I feel good. We have a good baking day together and they made some money. “

Johnson said the store’s thriving success is secondary to what’s happening in the kitchen.

“We bake rolls on his face. But in essence, it’s so much more. It’s a safe space. Somewhere where you can leave the outside world behind. It’s a new opportunity, “said Johnson.

“Baking is secondary. It’s about creating community. To make the children feel like they are working towards positive things. “

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The bakery’s goal is to become self-sufficient through sales alone, but is currently funded by the Holy Trinity Anglican Church, the Anglican Diocese (which employs Hardy), and other donors.

“The more products we sell, the more children we can employ. It’s a huge deal, “said Johnson.

Here you can order from TYP TOP BAKERY.

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If you know a young person who would like to work at TYP TOP BAKERY, you can apply here.

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