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Spice and Spectrum, Recipes for Resilience by iCan Dream Center and Chef Jerome Brown
Chef Jerome Brown has partnered with Tinley Park, Illinois-based nonprofit iCan Dream Center (www.icandreamcenter.com) in the creation of Spice & Spectrum. He is donating proceeds of the book to the organization which serves students in the south suburbs of Chicago who are marginalized by neurodiversity, disabilities, trauma, and other learning challenges.
Spice & Spectrum is a collection of Chef Jerome Brown’s most recent recipes broken into five sections that align with the iCan Dream Center mission. Throughout the Dream, Restore, Empower, Amplify, and Mobilize sections of the book, Dr. Evisha Ford, the founder and executive director of iCan Dream Center, shares the mission of the organization, stories of students navigating trauma, and the healing benefit of the organization’s culinary program that is highlighted throughout the book.
Students with autism (neurodiversity) and disabilities are nearly twice as likely to be suspended or expelled from school than their non-disabled peers. What’s more, 35% of inmates in juvenile lockups have some form of neurodiversity (autism, ADHD, et. all) or other learning disability.
iCan Dream Center seeks to empower students with autism and other learning deficits with the skills needed to thrive in life and to defy the statistics. Whether it is giving students opportunities to grow as student leaders, gaining vocational skills, self-advocacy, and self-care skills like cooking, the organization works with students individually to thrive. iCan Dream Center is a 501c3 nonprofit therapeutic school endorsed by the Illinois State Board of Education and serves dozens of school districts throughout the suburbs of Chicago.
Chef Jerome Brown, who has championed the iCan Dream Center cause, has shared his passion for cuisine with a variety of A-list entertainers, dignitaries, and elite professional athletes such as President and First Lady Barack and Michelle Obama, Shaquille O’Neal, the late Collin Powell, Priscilla Presley, Star Jones, Raymond Felton, Lamman Rucker, Carl Gustaf (King of Sweden), Byron Cage, Mike Bibby, Cam Newton and more.
Chef Jerome Brown appeared in the United States Army series “I’ve Got Skills” that aired on ESPN. Throughout his journey, Chef Jerome Brown has always maintained a desire to help others and has given back to aspiring chefs and marginalized youth.
Dr. Evisha Ford is an experienced speaker on educational equity and is available to discuss her students’ involvement in Chef Jerome Brown’s book and the intersection of trauma, disability, and the incarceration/school-to-prison pipeline.
Dr. Evisha Ford and Chef Jerome Brown are available for joint or individual media interviews on the release of Spice & Spectrum: Recipes for Resilience. The authors can be contacted at https://icandreamcenter.com/contact
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