Changing Lives for offenders through Catering
In HMP Rochester we provide a café for staff and visitors. Our café provides employment for four offenders where they learn basic catering and customer service skills. We provide a modest selection of food and confectionary 7 days a week 364 days a year.
Recently the prison carried out an exercise of viewing the prison from the eyes of a child it was quite apparent that improvements in the “visiting an offender” could be made. We have helped the prison implement some of these improvements including
- Availability of refreshments for all visitors on arrival at the prison
- Catering service for family days
- Improved menu at all visit sessions ( one each day and two on Saturdays)
We have not forgotten the prison staff and prepare fresh food each day which they can purchase cheaper than any local competitor. This is becoming more popular.
We believe that the offenders that work in our team will learn important life skills whilst working in our café and skills that they learn are transferable when it comes to look for employment. They are also challenged to develop ideas improve our service and often provide inspired thoughts that improve our revenue.
“I can’t believe my husband is getting excited about baking a cake, its great”
An offenders wife during a visit in August 2017
The café generates much need surplus to fund the work at Construct A future
Construct A Future works in partnership with HMP Rochester and Cookham Wood YOI to provide this valuable opportunity for offenders to gain experience working in our different enterprises.
We also owe a debt of thanks to Wates Family Enterprise Trust that has provided much needed funding to bridge the gap in our enterprise returns and costs of delivering this programme.
We welcome any funding and support
Changing Lives for ex-offenders with Construct A Future