We’re proud to call Sacramento our home, and we strive to show our deep appreciation to this beautiful, supportive community in tangible ways. Through educational efforts, public policy advocacy and collaboration with other leading culinary professionals, we stay actively involved in local and national conversations with one goal: to passionately promote Sacramento’s leadership in the farm-to-table movement and other key areas, in order to empower communities around the nation – and even the world – to take ownership of making smart, sustainable decisions surrounding food.
It all started with a simple decision: To allow it to be okay not to be okay. The goal is to provide tools and skills to identify and talk about mental health issues in a safe environment that encourages people to seek help they may need.
It was this culture change that co-owners Patrick and Bobbin introduced at Mulvaney’s B&L in Sacramento, CA with the help of the Innovation Learning Network. Together they inspired a new system where employees drop a card into an anonymous box when they clock in for a shift. This gives employees a safe place to express their state of mind and the floor manager a new method for knowing how the crew is doing and feeling. Taking a temperature of the crew this way alerts the manager to red flags they might not otherwise have known and it presents the chance to check-in and offer support.
Recognizing immense impact potential, Sacramento’s four major health care systems – Dignity Health, Kaiser Permanente, Sutter Health and UC Davis Medical Center – have come together to provide both mental health resources and project funding. Other partners include Innovation Learning Network, WellSpace Health, The Steinberg Institute and the James Beard Foundation.
Let’s “86” mental health stigma.
NEED HELP? If you’re experiencing a crisis, Text HOPE to 741-741 for 24/7 confidential support. NEED AN EAR TO LISTEN? Call the California Warm Line-1-855-845-7415 NEED A PATH TO CARE? If you’re not sure where to turn for health care services, Sacramento Covered can guide you to the medical or mental health care you need. Just call Toll Free 1-866-850-4321 or visit The Pantry. NEED MORE INFO? If you’re interested in more information about I Got Your Back, read on or contact us.
Training the Trainers
Our ongoing partnership with the James Beard Foundation has given us a voice on the national culinary stage, and we are proud to have brought that connection back to Sacramento by hosting the West Coast James Beard Salon, a meeting of influential and engaged chefs facilitated by James Beard Foundation staff that helped us focus local efforts on increasing food education opportunities.
As a result of our work with the salon, we partnered with the Foundation for California Community Colleges to start the Train the Trainer program in Sacramento. Within the program, culinary students attend a farmers market with a professional chef who coaches them to create nutritious, economical and easy meals using local ingredients. These trainees then take their meals on the road to teach the same principles to students in Sacramento area high schools.
Family Meal Sacramento
Family Meal Sacramento was created in March 2020 by Canon, Mulvaney’s and other restaurants. Chefs do three things every day- purchase food, prepare food and plate food. And we saw antsy cooks, empty restaurants and fields with crops going to waste and so we started cooking. What began in church parking lots and youth centers became pickups at school sites throughout the city and formed the basis for Great Plates Delivered which feeds over 1,000 Sacramento seniors every day. This statewide program has delivered over 25 million meals, supported California agriculture and kept people working. This has all been made possible with federal, state and local funding, as well as donations from farmers, ranchers and, most of all, the generosity of the citizens of Sacramento.
In addition to our work in education, we love to get out of the kitchen and work toward more sustainable solutions for businesses in and around the food industry, which is why we’re actively involved in public policy advocacy at the local, regional and national levels. The focus, as in the restaurant, is that everyone go to bed well fed. So we have been working to take the lessons of Family Meal Sacramento to help lessen nutritional insecurity.
Patrick also engages in the James Beard Foundation’s Chefs Boot Camp for Policy and Change, a network of civically and politically minded chefs that provides tools and guidance for those who are committed to creating a better food system. The pandemic has shown us how to better take care of our neighbors and we believe that a better food system will arise, bringing a brighter future for our children.
Roots of Change
Locally, we work with Roots of Change and the California Food Policy Council to effect change in statewide policies. Given our proximity to the Capitol building, we have a unique opportunity to remain actively involved with state legislators on issues surrounding food policy advocacy. From improving food access and affordability, to improving transparency around farm workers’ rights and the humane treatment of farm animals, to promoting healthy eating habits and reducing the incidence of hunger in our local community, we are passionate about doing our part to promote meaningful changes in legislation.
We believe that breaking bread around the table is the first step in conversations that can change society for the better. Bringing people together, stepping back and watching the magic happen is one of our favorite things to do.
In addition to our continued support of the Center for Land Based Learning, CAFF and Yolo County Land Trust, Patrick recently joined the California Stewardship Council for the American Farmland Trust, an organization committed to combating urban sprawl in the interest of protecting some of the most productive farmland in the world. American Farmland Trust’s efforts in California include working with state lawmakers to address the most pressing sustainability challenges for our farms and ranches through spearheading the California Agricultural Vision initiative.
Business Mentoring for Women
In conjunction with the Northern California World Trade Center (NorCalWTC), we’ve had the pleasure of hosting women from Katmandu and the Congo as a part of the organization’s international women’s mentoring program. During these visits, Bobbin shared insights about our entrepreneurial spirit, values and ethics, while she encouraged the women to think big, be courageous and stay true to their unique passions.