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    Salem youth program receives state grant

    A Salem nonprofit that provides at-risk youths with jobs skills training will be able to professionally outfit its facility with the help of a $500,000 state grant. Root NS received funding from the state’s Workforce Skills Capital Grant program, which supports educational institutions that partner with industry to meet employment needs of businesses. Founded last year, Root offers training to people ages 16 to 24 to help them find employment in the hospitality industry. Participants undergo a 12-week, 300-hour program of classroom and kitchen training at Root’s facility, including 40 or more hours of direct hands-on training in professional kitchens through Root’s partnerships with local businesses. The grant, which Root matches with privately raised funds, will help finance the construction of a new state-of-the-art kitchen at its Shetland Park facility, which also includes a cafe and an event space, both of which are used for student training and to serve the public.


    John Laidler can be reached at