Fresh Success

What We Do  /  Equity  /  Fresh Success

Helping low income Californians succeed in the workforce.

New CalFresh Employment and Training Model

The Foundation is helping local community colleges and community organizations to start CalFresh Employment and Training (E&T) programs, in partnership with their counties. Tools, templates, a training curriculum, and a handbook are being developed to ease the start-up process. The Foundation will continue to support effective program practices and help manage federal funding. 

Fresh Success will help CalFresh recipients in community colleges and community-based organizations gain skills and employment. The program will be piloted in 2016 at two colleges—Gavilan College in Santa Clara County and Cosumnes River College in Sacramento County—and will expand to additional colleges and community organizations in the future.

“The labor market is rapidly evolving. By 2020, two-thirds of jobs will require some education beyond high school. To compete for these jobs, SNAP participants need skills training and education, not just help with a resume.”

Tom Vilsack,United States Secretary of Agriculture, October 29, 2015

About CalFresh

The CalFresh Program helps to improve the health and well-being of qualified households and individuals by providing them a means to meet their nutritional needs. CalFresh is California’s version of the federal assistance program called SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program), formerly known as food stamps.

Learn more about the CalFresh program >

CalFresh Employment and Training programs

Currently, people who receive CalFresh benefits may be eligible for specific Employment and Training programs through their counties. Counties can choose whether they will administer an E&T program, and many counties do not offer an E&T program. Download an overview of E&T from CLASP >

Fresh Success is a new model for E&T in California, based in part on a successful model in the State of Washington. Download the Annie E. Casey Foundation report >

Program Services

Services will vary in each Fresh Success pilot program, and may include job readiness training, work-based learning, career counseling, interview training, job search, placement and retention services, educational plans, academic monitoring, tutoring, workshops on budgeting, and case management. Participants may also receive reimbursements for transportation, required textbooks and classroom supplies.

Program Benefits:

Improves skills for unemployed and low-wage workers. 
Fresh Success is a critical tool that can provide employer-valued skills training to low-income Californians.

Increases participation in CalFresh.
CalFresh is one of the largest anti-poverty programs in California. E&T programs like Fresh Success incentivize people to enroll in CalFresh by offering supplemental services and resources in addition to additional benefits on top of access to nutritious food.

Extends benefits to students.
Community college students are usually excluded from CalFresh benefits if they are not working at least half-time; however, participation in an E&T program such as Fresh Success provides an exemption so they can receive food benefits while in school.

Provides a path from poverty.
Research shows completing a certificate or degree at a community college is associated with increased wages and employment opportunities.

Contact Us


Aimee Chitayat
Principal, AC Strategic Solutions
T: 510.928.9531

Foundation Contact

Tanya Garbolino
Senior Program Specialist, Fresh Success
T: 916.491.4477

Fact Sheet

Download the fact sheet >

Partners and Supporters

  • California Department of Social Services
  • California Welfare Directors Association
  • California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office
  • U.S. Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Services (FNS)
  • Western Center on Law and Poverty
  • Walter S. Johnson Foundation
  • Y&H Soda Foundation

Fresh Success Pilot Colleges

  • Gavilan College, Santa Clara County 
  • Cosumnes River College, Sacramento County

How to get involved

  • Start a pilot program in a community-based organization or community college
  • Join with other funders to support planning, technical assistance and pilots

Foundation for California
Community Colleges

1102 Q Street, Suite 4800
Sacramento, CA 95811

Toll Free: 866.325.3222
Fax: 916.325.0844

Contact us >

Supporting our Work

Help the Foundation further its mission to benefit, support, and enhance the California Community Colleges.

Get involved >

Who we serve

The Foundation serves as the official foundation supporting the Board of Governors, Chancellor’s Office, and the entire California Community College system, including 113 colleges and 72 districts, serving 2.1 million students.

Map iconView a list of the 113 California Community Colleges >