Aug 13


Emeril Lagasse Foundation staff visited community grant recipients.

Earlier this year, Emeril Lagasse Foundation granted over $300,000 to three New Orleans-based non-profits. This summer, the Foundation staff had the privilege of visiting a few of these wonderful organizations to see how what they’re doing inspires, mentors and enables youth.

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In July, we spent the day with Second Harvest Food Bank to learn about their Summer Feeding programs. We met at the Second Harvest warehouse where volunteers were busy cooking and packing up lunches for the day. This summer, Second Harvest will serve over 200,000 meals at 60 sites in Jefferson, Orleans, St. Bernard, Plaquemines, Lafourche, Evangeline, Iberia & Vermillion Parishes. Next stop on the tour was one of these summer camp sites, Sojourner Truth Neighborhood Center. We visited with the campers during their lunch, which was Chicken Fricassee with Mushroom Gravy, Rice Pilaf and Succotash. The campers had a great time discussing what their favorite vegetables were and what they liked about summer camp.

Photo Jul 16, 1 41 31 PMLater that month, we stopped by the Contemporary Arts Center (CAC) Summer Arts Camp for the end of the week showcase. Each week the CAC campers explore a different book that presents brave characters who use their imaginations to solve problems that make the world a better place. The selected award-winning and bestselling children’s books will inform and inspire campers as they explore in and through our five art forms: music, visual arts, culinary, theater, and dance.

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This week, the campers read The Big Orange Splot by Daniel Manus Pinkwater. They created art pieces based on the book, sang a song in rhythms, created an interactive video, and performed a dance. In culinary arts class, they made fruit pizzas as a healthy and fun snack.


Finally, we stopped by the Youth Empowerment Program’s 2015 Summer Camp talent show, titled “Around the World in 80 Days,” The show gave campers the chance to demonstrate the new skills and knowledge they gained from the variety of activities they participated in this summer. YEP served 79 youth this summer, ages 7-13 with fun, free and engaging summer experience. Campers participated in a variety of field trips, culinary, arts and crafts, music, dance and computer literacy and more.

For more information on the Foundation’s Spring Grants, click here.


Jun 19


Chef Emeril Lagasse and the Board of Directors of Emeril Lagasse Foundation (ELF) announce the distribution of its spring grants to three New Orleans-based non-profits. Second Harvest Food Bank, Bayou District Foundation, and the Contemporary Arts Center were recipients of funding totaling over $300,000. Simultaneously, the staff and board of the Foundation welcome four new board members to the team in time for community projects to commence this summer.

“The growth of the Foundation is a testament to the work we are doing here in New Orleans to change children’s lives through culinary, life skills and nutritional education,” said Chef Emeril Lagasse. “My wife Alden and I are grateful to be supported by passionate board members and excited to see these new projects come to life.”

Living out its mission to improve the quality of children’s lives through culinary, nutrition, garden, arts and life skills programs, the Foundation is pleased to support the Second Harvest Food Bank for a sixth year starting this summer. With a grant from ELF, Second Harvest will be able to expand its Summer Feeding Program to achieve the goal of serving 200,000 meals and 25,000 snacks to 4,500 children at risk of hunger. This grant also provides meals to hungry kids during the 2015-2016 school year through Kids Café, where twenty five thousand students at 40 sites will have access to supper during their enrichment programs.

Funds will be granted to Bayou District Foundation to support education programming at the early learning center and new K-8 charter school. This innovative community re-development model focused on education enables children and families to escape the cycle of poverty, build a thriving community, and live productive, healthy and fulfilling lives.

Emeril Lagasse Foundation also supports the Contemporary Arts Center (CAC) this summer by serving as the culinary sponsor of the 2015 Summer Arts Camp. Funds will be used to defray the cost of fees for culinary teaching artists, culinary supplies, materials, and equipment, in addition to underwriting camper scholarships. Approximately one-third of the 400 campers attend Summer Arts Camp on a full or partial needs-based scholarship each year, including many underserved and special-needs children. For more information on the beneficiaries, please visit Second Harvest Food Bank at; Bayou District Foundation at; and Contemporary Arts Center at


May 27

Beneficiary Spotlight: Liberty’s Kitchen

Emeril Lagasse Foundation at Liberty's Kitchen

Liberty’s Kitchen Café and Coffee House provides a path to self-sufficiency through food service-based training, education and employment for at-risk youth. Its Contract Meals Program launched with support from Emeril Lagasse Foundation, and provides healthy from scratch meals to local charter schools. Training takes place in the Emeril Lagasse Foundation Teaching Kitchen at the café site.

Last month, Liberty’s Kitchen hosted the Emeril Lagasse Foundation’s Annual Board Dinner. The students were trained with the Emeril’s restaurant staff to learn back of house & front of house skills.

Emeril Lagasse Foundation at Liberty's Kitchen

From a welcome reception to a seated dinner, the Liberty’s Kitchen students did a wonderful job serving a delicious meal to the Emeril Lagasse Foundation board members. After dinner, the students were given the opportunity to tell their stories. Despite their many challenges in life, each student was hopeful and seeking success.

By grabbing a quick cup of coffee, or eating breakfast or lunch at the Liberty’s Kitchen Café and Coffee House, you too can make a difference in a young person’s life. All proceeds from food and beverage service go directly to support Liberty’s Kitchen Youth Development Program.  Open for breakfast and lunch, Monday through Friday from 7:00 am to 3:00 pm and Saturday for breakfast and coffee from 8:00 am to 2:00 pm.

To learn more about Liberty’s Kitchen, visit their website.

Apr 27

Beneficiary Spotlight: Cafe Reconcile

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Café Reconcile’s Class of Spring 2014 at a class field trip to Emeril’s

Café Reconcile, a hospitality training program for at risk youth, has enabled over 1200 students to empower their own futures. Expanded training and events are now held at the Emeril Lagasse Foundation Hospitality Center on the second floor of the café.

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Alden & Emeril Lagasse visit Cafe Reconcile

The students of Café Reconcile were a key part of Emeril Lagasse Foundation’s 10th anniversary fundraising weekend in November. The students were trained with the Emeril’s restaurant staff to learn back of house and front of house skills. From serving and plating Emeril’s signature four course dinner to serving the 700 guests on the floor, the students were an important part in making the weekend a success.

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    Students serving the guests at Carnivale du Vin

By dining at Café Reconcile, you help to train their students while supporting their training financially. You also get some great food!  Open for lunch Monday – Friday from 11 AM – 2:30 PM  (Stop by on Thursdays for their delicious White Beans special!)

And don’t forget to keep an eye out for Café Reconcile serving their delicious food at various fairs and festivals during the spring and summer. To learn more about Cafe Reconcile and their upcoming events, visit their website.

Apr 21

Emeril Lagasse Foundation to Participate in GiveNOLA Day on Tuesday, May 5th

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Hosted by the Greater New Orleans Foundation, GiveNOLA Day is the community’s second annual, 24-hour online charitable giving event to inspire people to give generously to nonprofit organizations that are making our region stronger, creating a vibrant community for all. Emeril Lagasse Foundation is proud to be a participating nonprofit.

We ask you to support Emeril Lagasse Foundation in its efforts to inspire, mentor and enable all young people, especially those from disadvantaged circumstances, to realize their full potential as productive and creative individuals, and to make a lasting impact on their lives.

The public is invited to visit from midnight to midnight on Tuesday, May 5th and every gift over $10 will receive a little lagniappe thanks to GiveNOLA Day generous sponsors and the Greater New Orleans Foundation.

For more information about the Foundation, please visit And for more information about GiveNOLA Day and the other nonprofit organizations involved, please visit


About the Greater New Orleans Foundation:

The Greater New Orleans Foundation is one of the oldest and largest philanthropic organizations in the region. Its mission is to create a thriving community for all. Every day, GNOF joins other foundations, nonprofit organizations, community leaders, and government officials to address the needs of the community and build consensus for solutions. Together with a family of donors, the Foundation has invested over $100 million in the region since it opened its doors over 30 years ago to respond to community needs.


About GiveNOLA Day:

GiveNOLA Day is a 24-hour, online giving event organized by the Greater New Orleans Foundation to ignite the giving community in Southeast Louisiana. Tied to a national event, Give Local America is sponsored by the Council on Foundations and technology partner Kimbia who are hosting a national giving day for hundreds of community foundations across the country on May 5, 2015.

Apr 15

Emeril Lagasse Foundation Announces 2015 Dates for Boudin, Bourbon & Beer and Carnivale du Vin!

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Annual Fundraising Weekend to Be Held in New Orleans November 13 & 14

NEW ORLEANS, LA – The countdown begins to Emeril Lagasse Foundation’s annual fundraising weekend returning to New Orleans November 13 – 14, 2015. The country’s best chefs, including New Orleans’ top talent, will join the festivities for a two-day culinary celebration, featuring the Louisiana-inspired outdoor festival Emeril Lagasse Foundation’s Boudin, Bourbon & Beer and wine auction and gala dinner Emeril Lagasse Foundation’s Carnivale du Vin.

Patrons can expect to kick up their boots, raise their glasses, and indulge all weekend long as the organization takes it to next level in true New Orleans style by providing the ultimate culinary experience over the course of two days this fall.  Tickets for both events will go on sale August 1.


Funds raised at both events benefit Emeril Lagasse Foundation, which creates opportunities to inspire, mentor and enable youth through life skills development and culinary, nutrition, and arts education. Last year’s fundraising weekend raised $2.25 million for children’s charities.

For more information, please visit or like us on Facebook at, Twitter at, and Instagram at

For media inquiries, please contact Jennifer Bond or Kelsey Hyde at 504-897-0462, or