The Patachou Foundation, founded by local restaurateur Martha Hoover in 2013, is preparing to move into a 4,000-square-foot building it is renovating for its headquarters, which will include its production and teaching kitchen and a for-profit coffee shop.
The facility, to be called Kitchen HQ, is in Marcy Village, at 4565 Marcy Lane, near the Indiana State Fairgrounds. It will give the foundation more room for its school meal program and allow it to add training programs.
Currently, the Patachou Foundation shares both kitchen and office space with Patachou Inc., the restaurant company that operates Café Patachou, Petite Chou Bistro and Champagne Bar, Napolese, Public Greens and Bar One Fourteen.
Patachou Foundation Executive Director Matthew Feltrop told IBJ that renovation of the space began in earnest this month and that the foundation expects to be in the new space this summer.
The foundation currently provides more than 1,000 after-school meals per week to students at eight Indianapolis elementary and middle schools. All the schools are in areas of high poverty or in food deserts—defined as areas where residents must travel a mile or more to find groceries. The foundation also offers hands-on cooking lessons at the schools it serves.
Having a larger space, Feltrop said, will allow Patachou Foundation to offer meals more frequently at these schools over the next 18 months. “We are three-days-a-week at most of our schools, and our goal is to grow to four or five days at all of our sites.”
Kitchen HQ will also allow the foundation to begin reaching high-school students through in-house career training programs offered by industry professionals.
Students will participate in programs both in the Kitchen HQ kitchen, and in the 500-square-foot coffee shop that’s also planned at the facility.
The coffee shop will operate as a for-profit business, Feltrop said, and 100 percent of its profits will benefit the foundation’s work.
These donations will supplement money already being donated by Patachou Inc.’s Public Greens restaurants. Public Greens’ Broad Ripple location also donates all profits to the Patachou Foundation, and the restaurant’s Fashion Mall and downtown locations donate a portion of their profits to the cause.
Feltrop said the foundation is discussing with Indianapolis Public Schools which of its high schools will participate in Kitchen HQ's job training program.
The cost for the Kitchen HQ project is $750,000, and the Patachou Foundation is conducting a capital campaign to help raise money for the effort. The public phase of the campaign kicked off Feb. 20 with a $100,000 fund-raising goal.
The campaign had raised $21,540 as of Wednesday, Feltrop said. If donations reach $30,000 by March 29, it will trigger a matching $30,000 grant from an anonymous donor, leaving $40,000 left to raise.