Christ Kitchen coffee shop gives women a new lease on life

SPOKANE, Wash. — Christ Kitchen is giving women a chance to live their life to the fullest with the help of a new program they’re offering.

It all starts with a cup of coffee.

The women who walk into Christ Kitchen come from rough backgrounds. CEO Kim Kelly said many have dealt with abuse, addiction or have spent time in prison.

“When our women do come to us they are hopeless,” she said. “There isn’t any hope in their life.”

Christ Kitchen is there to change that through job training. They offer several different types of training, like baking and catering. Kelly said they’ve been getting requests for barista training, which is how Daily Bread Brews came to fruition.

The person in charge of training is no stranger to being in another woman’s shoes. Allisha Corley was homeless and living in her car.

“After going to treatment I had found that it was really challenging for me to find a job,” Corley explained. “I am a felon. I am a recovering heroin addict, and it was really hard for someone just to give me an opportunity.”

She walked into Christ Kitchen four years ago. Now, she’s the training coordinator.

“I not only get to train them a practical job skill, but I also get to help them in fellowship with them and just show them that recovery is possible,” Corley said.

Corley is currently training  in the coffee shop before she starts to train other women. Women will come into the program, learn the skills they need to get a job and support their family.

Kelly said it’s more than just job training.

“It’s a mentorship program,” she said. “Women who have been through our program, who are in our program, are walking side by side doing the training and they really collaborate with one another.”

Some women stay in the program for six months. Others will stay for a couple years, Kelly said. It depends on their trauma. She said since 2015, more than 100 women have graduated and only 5% have relapsed.

One of those successful stories is Corley.

“I never imagined that something that I went through that was just so horrible could be something that would be called inspirational,” Corley said.

Corley hopes she is able to help as many women as she can to show them that recovery is possible.

“There is people like you that are succeeding and that we can help you do that here,” she said. “And today, I hold my head high and that’s something that I believe is because of Christ Kitchen.”

Christ Kitchen is open Tuesday to Friday from 10-5 and Saturday from 10-3.

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