Social Entrepreneurship in Action at Naropa University

Naropa and Bridge House Will Partner on Catering and Food Services to Support Transitions from Homelessness in Boulder

Jan 12, 2016, 14:38 ET from Naropa University

BOULDER, Colo., Jan. 12, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Naropa University today announced an exciting partnership with Bridge House, a Boulder-based nonprofit organization providing a range of services to the homeless community. Through this partnership, Naropa and Bridge House are creating meaningful opportunities for individuals to transition out of homelessness, while providing food service for more than 1400 students, faculty, and staff across Naropa University's three campuses in Boulder.

Under the terms of the partnership, Naropa has contracted with Community Table Kitchen, a social enterprise owned and managed by Bridge House, to provide food services and catering to Naropa University. Executive Chef John Trejo will oversee the menu, day-to-day operations, and training. Crucially, this partnership will employ more than a dozen individuals, who themselves are either formerly homeless or transitioning out of homelessness.

Naropa University has a long-standing relationship with Bridge House. President Charles G. Lief is currently a Board member; Joy Redstone, director of Naropa Community Counseling, was previously Executive Director of Bridge House.  

"Naropa's partnership with Bridge House supports our increasing commitment to supporting social enterprise, both in the classroom and in practice," said Lief. "The cafes will enable our students, faculty, and staff to engage with people who are often hidden from view or stigmatized and provide much needed financial resources to the employees and to Bridge House. We hope that more companies and organizations can follow our lead in creating this kind of sustainable social impact."

"Bridge House's mission is to create opportunities for homeless people to be successful," said Isabel McDevitt, Executive Director of Bridge House. "Through this partnership with Naropa, we are creating jobs for people through our Ready to Work program, while generating revenue to sustain our programs to provide meals and services to homeless and the working poor."

About Naropa University ( Located in Boulder, Colorado, Naropa University is a private, liberal arts institution offering undergraduate and graduate degree programs. Naropa University is a leader in contemplative education, an approach to learning and teaching that integrates Eastern wisdom studies and traditional Western scholarship. Naropa is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

About Bridge House ( Bridge House provides a range of services to homeless individuals in Boulder. Bridge House programs include the Resource Center offering case management for homeless people seeking assistance with health care, employment and mental health services and the Ready to Work House and Employment Center offering housing, jobs and support services homeless adults. To create jobs for Ready to Work trainees, Bridge House operates two social enterprises including Community Table Kitchen.

CONTACT: Bill Rigler,, 303-546-3533


SOURCE Naropa University