Supported by a three-year $125,000 grant from the Emeril Lagasse Foundation, Food for Thought is launching the Full Circle Kitchen program to expand service and commitment to food insecure children and their families in Okaloosa and Walton Counties.

Offered to high school students enrolled in Food for Thought, the Full Circle Kitchen Program will bring students into Food for Thought’s Santa Rosa Beach Pantry where they will learn fundamental cooking skills from restaurant partners and local chefs.

The Full Circle Kitchen program will provide a fully functional teaching kitchen with basic cooking equipment and a safe learning environment to acquire the skills necessary to prepare a meal. Students will build upon the skills they learned the week before in classes designed around limited budgets and access to food.

“By providing life skills, education, and job placement opportunities, we will have seen these children from Kindergarten through graduation and ensured they have the skills to thrive and making a lasting impact on our community,” says Food For Thought Founder and Executive Director Tiffanie Nelson.

The grant from the Emeril Lagasse Foundation will support capital needs, operating expenses and programming efforts associated with the program’s newly constructed teaching kitchen.

 More information about the Emeril Lagasse Foundation is available at

About Emeril Lagasse Foundation:

Founded in 2002 by Chef Emeril Lagasse and his wife Alden, Emeril Lagasse Foundation is a 501c(3) public charity headquartered in New Orleans. The Foundation’s mission is to create opportunities to inspire, mentor and enable youth to reach their full potential through culinary, nutrition and arts education with a focus on life skills development. Since its inception, Emeril Lagasse Foundation has granted more than $8 million to several children’s charities to support culinary, nutrition and arts programs. The Foundation was recognized as the 2016 Nonprofit of the Year by Louisiana Association of Non-Profit Organizations. To learn more about the Foundation and its beneficiaries, visit, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.