The Rachael Ray Foundation's ProStart Grow Grant™

To support ProStart® and transform high schools and lives across the country, The Rachael Ray Foundation™ is investing $375,000 to build up or enhance up to five ProStart schools to make a difference for their students, their educators and their community. The National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation (NRAEF) will select up to five schools to receive a portion of these funds.

rachael-ray-prostart-grow-grant-600px.jpgThrough the ProStart program and its educational initiatives, the NRAEF recognizes every state, every community and every school are different, and that each have varying capacities to effectively deliver curriculum, training and employment connections to young people. Communities across the country are brimming with potential for ProStart to have a profound impact on the students, educators, industry and more, yet they may lack the resources to do so successfully.

Whether in need of ovens, textbooks, or teacher training, the ProStart Grow Grant investments will address the barriers to successful engagement in industry education and careers for the young adults enrolled in ProStart, their schools, and the local employers. 


Applications closed on Friday, October 11, 2019. All applications received by 11:59 PM on October 11 will be reviewed by the NRAEF. Grantee awards will be announced in November. 

How the Grant Works

The NRAEF will facilitate the grant process by accepting applications from all current or onboarding/incoming ProStart schools for the 2020-2021 academic year. Each school will submit a complete application and, if selected, will be required to sign an agreement about joining ProStart for the next school year or return the funds.

Who Should Apply

Applications can be submitted by ProStart educators, high school culinary arts instructors or the school administrators. 

How Winners Will Be Chosen

The NRAEF has assembled a panel of judges to review the applications. During a two-week judging period, the panel will review each application anonymously. The final selections will be made based on the following need-based qualifications:

  • Barriers to success (e.g. financial support, access to resources, etc.)
  • Efficacy of program (e.g. administering exams, obtaining the COA, etc.)
  • Classroom equipment
  • Career opportunities available to students upon graduation
  • Ability for the grant to make an impact on the school, the students and the community at-large

State Restaurant Association Participation

The NRAEF and the Rachael Ray Foundation are looking to the SRAs for their support in sharing this announcement with the educators and school administrators in their state to ensure a variety of schools across the country have the opportunity to apply.

Upon selecting the schools, the NRAEF will also work with SRA partners to announce the selections and support the school in implementing the grant work.

For More Information 

Please contact with additional questions.


The Rachael Ray Foundation Offers High Schools Chance to Bring the Nation’s Top Culinary Arts and Restaurant Management Program to Their Students

About ProStart

ProStart LogoProStart is a career and technical education program teaching culinary arts and restaurant management fundamentals in 1,900 high schools across the country. During the two-year curriculum, ProStart showcases the breadth of opportunities the industry has to offer and leverages it as a lens to learn crucial skillsets including marketing, math, public speaking, teamwork, and time management. Students complete ProStart prepared for either college or a career. ProStart is offered in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Department of Defense bases around the world. ProStart is run by the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation.

About The Rachael Ray Foundation

The Rachael Ray Foundation™ (RRF) is a private foundation that is fully funded by the proceeds from the sale of Rachael Ray™ Nutrish®. RRF was launched by Rachael in 2016 to better support the causes she cares for most such as helping animals in need.

Every year, millions of animals enter shelters throughout the U.S. They’re in need of care, medical attention, food, and forever homes. We’re looking to make a difference in the lives of many four-legged friends – and even some more exotic ones – who require extra love and attention.

Additionally, RRF works with organizations that support the mission of Yum-o!, Rachael’s 501c3, in order to bolster and amplify their efforts through additional funding. Yum-o! empowers kids and their families to develop healthy relationships with food and cooking. It also teaches families to cook, feeds hungry kids, and funds cooking education, among other initiatives.

RRF also makes funds available for emergency situations and natural disasters where help is needed urgently and swiftly, such as hurricanes, fires, and floods – as well as other causes that Rachael cares about.

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