From education to employment

Novus Cambria partners with Fred Sirieix’s The Right Course to prepare prison learners for a career in catering and hospitality

Novus Cambria partners with Fred Sirieix’s The Right Course to prepare prison learners for a career in catering and hospitality

Leading prison education provider opens new training facilities at HMP Berwyn to support learners gain skills for future employment

Leading prison education provider Novus Cambria and Fred Sirieix’s charity ‘The Right Course’ have partnered to deliver new training facilities to prepare prisoners for employment upon release at HMP Berwyn in North Wales.

In an official opening of the new facility learners worked their first ever restaurant service under the close eye of Fred and team, along with Novus Cambria tutors. It is the fourth prison training kitchen for The Right Course, with Novus learners at HMP Wormwood Scrubs and HMP Isis already benefiting from the additional training and improved employment outcomes.

Commenting on the opening Fred Sirieix, Founder and Trustee of The Right Course, said:

“We are delighted to see this new facility open to learners so that more offenders can turn their lives around by gaining the skills they will need to move into secure employment upon their release from prison.

“Demand for well-trained, highly skilled workers is currently high in the hospitality and catering sector and our joint new training restaurant here at HMP Berwyn will help to address this while having a huge impact on the career prospects of our learners when they reintegrate back into society.

“We are excited to be working with Novus Cambria and looking forward to building on our partnership to offer opportunities to even more learners so that they can gain the right skills, experience and qualifications to secure meaningful, long-term employment in hospitality.”

Novus Cambria Wellbeing Hub

The partnership is part of a major investment at HMP Berwyn by Novus Cambria in a new training Hub to provide prison learners with facilities that will enable them to gain industry standard qualifications and skills in catering, hospitality and barbering, so that they can develop the skills required to secure the stable employment upon release which reduces reoffending.

The Hub features a full industrial standard kitchen and barber shop, along with spaces for teaching and supporting learners in small groups. It is the result of a collaboration between Novus Cambria, HMPPS in Wales and The Right Course, alongside Paragon and Design LSM bringing the vision to life.

With a recent Censuswide survey of 5,000 people commissioned by Novus finding that 64% of people agree that ‘Prison education should align with skills needs of the economy in order to address labour shortages’, (raising to 68% in Wales), the new facilities will enable Novus Cambria to train prisoners for a career in a sector which is currently experiencing an acute skills shortage.

Brand new Novus Cambria contract

The launch of the facility coincided with Novus Cambria commencing a second contract for the provision of education at HMP Berwyn. During the first contract Novus Cambria supported almost 4000 learners with 10,000 qualifications and already has an employment rate on release above the national average.

Novus and Novus Cambria Managing Director Peter Cox commented: “Whilst we are pleased that the employment outcomes at HMP Berwyn are above national average, these new facilities will enable us to go even further, supporting more offenders to gain skills in industry sectors which are currently crying out for workers to address the skills gaps that they are currently facing. The real industry skills that our learners will learn in the barbershop, restaurant and café will be so important in giving them the skills they will need on release to secure the stable employment which is so critical to reducing reoffending rates.”

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