Committed to Healing | HEALING SUMMIT 2015 | Berlin Germany March 3, 2015
“Creating a paradigm shift through a holistic lifestyle”…was last year’s theme
This year our theme is “Committed to Healing” Today is a call to action!
As part of our Commitment to Healing we would like to highlight a few of the speakers from the recent Healing Summit 2015. This one day conference considered how to encourage people to live life in all its full richness, caring for others to nurture greater well being and empowerment for all.
Dr Neal Bermas With a Ph.D. in policy and management, experience working for the Walt Disney Company and Sheraton, and years of teaching restaurant and hospitality management courses at NYU and New York’s Institute of Culinary Education (ICE), Neal Bermas could have lived a very comfortable, even carefree, existence. Instead, he chose to help disadvantaged youths thousands of miles away attain their own dreams. Founded in 2007 with a focus on Vietnam, Bermas’ not-for-profit organization STREETS International aims to help orphaned, poor, and other disadvantaged and at-risk young people prepare for careers in the hospitality industry. The group runs an 18-month training program— accredited by ICE—in Hoi An, as well as a café in that town and an outreach program in Hue.
Transformation through ambition and sustainability – careers, self sufficiency and dignity for disadvantaged youth
The mission at STREETS:
No matter what one’s path – does not limit once future
When we ask a lot we get a lot
We are all equal
Life should be full of dignity and choices
A COMPREHENSIVE PROGRAM – During the 18-month program, each Trainee is provided with housing, food, basic financial support, active community and social support, and medical care. The housing accommodations are based on a model of supervised, small semi-autonomous groups.
Resident house parents and all other STREETS staff are available and integrally involved as supportive and mentoring members of the overall STREETS community.Trainee development is not only a classroom and practice objective but integrated into all the various components of the comprehensive program, increasing the Trainees’ sense of dignity, community and responsibility.
Following the 18-month program, STREETS involvement continues with the support necessary for Trainees to secure employment, helping to ensure their independence and success. Ultimately, the Trainees’ greatest accomplishments are not just their newly achieved culinary and hospitality careers but lives that have been empowered with dignity and choice.
100% of the kids have jobs at the 5 star hotels in Vietnam after 18 months of training; within 2 years they are making the equivalent of an English teacher in Vietnam.
Making the restaurant successful is important to this process; ask a number of the employees to stay and work for 6 to 9 months. We are # 1 on trip advisor! Then we realized the back of the house kids were not getting the practice with English that the front of the house kids were getting —WE THOUGHt HOW CAN WE CHANGE THIS —so we created trainee led market tours for the back of house kids and led 5,000 tours last year. We also created an experience called oodles of noodles and had 10,000 trainee led marketers in 2015.
WHY? Why not? When we come from rich and developed areas – help to transform those of us that are less fortunate.
Healing brings us all here today – but I ask if we can ever be healed if a child’s belly is empty? Get involved and figure out ways to help.