Welcome to the third installment in our short series of posts from people who are past Hatch-a-thon participants! This one highlights Try Pie, the brainchild of 2015 Hatch-a-thon participants Megan Tensen and Sarah Turner. Try Pie was one of two Hatch-a-thon alums recently named a recipient of one of Duke Leadership’s $10,000 Traditioned Innovation Grants!
Tell us a little bit about your project, please. What are you doing now?
We’re co-directing the Try Pie program in the Cedar Valley of Iowa. Try Pie is a social enterprise that employs high school girls to make and sell pie as they are equipped with life and leadership skills. Each week, teens work alongside a diverse group of other students from across our community while practicing teamwork, problem solving, leadership, responsibility, and other top skills for future employment. Paid time in the classroom is led by local leaders who coach the team in areas including the job application process, customer service, financial goal setting, interpersonal communication and cultural intelligence. Our goal is to see each teen complete the program confident in their strengths and abilities as they pursue future employment or education.
What happened with your project after the Hatch-a-thon?
We went to the Hatch-a-thon about a year into developing our program. Since then, we’ve hired eight additional students, established retail partnerships to sell our pies, hired additional program leadership, and solidified pieces of our program’s curriculum and business structures. Our teens have made 5,614 pies over 1,175 hours of work experience in the last two years, gaining practical employment skills. Each teen has started a bank account with a local credit union and received financial training to manage the paychecks they earn. We’ve been excited to see the growth in both the program and our students since the Hatch-a-thon.
Did your experience in the Hatch-a-thon help you get to where you are today? If so, how?
The Hatch-a-thon was a great chance to solidify the foundational values and structures of our program. The process required us to repeatedly speak our mission, helping us focus and clarify our vision and program offerings. The group setting of the Hatch-a-thon introduced us to people with a variety of ideas and perspectives, but shared passions for faith, innovative entrepreneurship and creative discipleship. As a Christian social enterprise, finding peers, as well as facilitators, who could offer advice from both ministry and business perspectives was critical for the impact of our mission. Maintaining a relationship with Mark and Kenda has continued momentum for growth in our program and ultimately our students.
Hungry for more? Sign up for our newsletter and stay up to date on our latest blogs and Ministry Incubators news! Or, are you ready to take action? Think about attending a Hatch-a-thon where you can start planning your own venture! Check out the next one happening March 29-31 at Princeton Theological Seminary.