During a September visit to the African Community Center (ACC) resettlement office in Las Vegas, Nevada, ECDC’s Matching Grant Program Officer Kim Toft made a visit to Bon Breads Baking Co, Inc., a wholesale bakery that employs resettled refugees in the area.
Human Resources Manager Alma Canto explained why the company is so willing to hire refugees and what it takes to get and keep a position on the production team making artisan bread for many of the major properties on the famous Las Vegas Strip.
Bon Breads is a company founded by Peruvian immigrants, so they understand what it means to give newcomers a chance to create a livelihood in the U.S. They look for dynamic people who learn how to perform work duties quickly that are not difficult but can be very demanding.
“As long as refugees are willing to work hard and learn what is needed,” Canto says, “we are more than willing to train people with no background in food production to teach the skills needed be a part of their high quality bakery team.”
There have been many successes over the five years that Bon Breads has worked with local resettled refugees. One example is a former refugee client who started in a janitorial position three years ago as a newcomer, and now is a current supervisor. Canto said they quickly recognized that he possessed the qualities of a team leader, and after multiple promotions he now oversees a production shift of 40-60 employees.
Employers play an important role in our efforts to welcome and integrate refugees into the U.S. workplace and economy. Thank you Bon Breads for providing a positive employment experience and livelihood to so many in Las Vegas!