By Angela Green, Content Executive, H&C News: Umbrella Training and The Forward Trust to support ex-offenders into hospitality apprenticeships.
Umbrella Training has partnered with social business and charity The Forward Trust to launch the industry’s first formal apprenticeship pathway for ex-offenders.
The Forward Trust have developed a new pilot scheme called the Prison Apprentice Pathway (or PAP), supported and funded by charitable trust Porticus UK. The aim is to create an apprenticeship pathway that will introduce more people to the hospitality sector.
The project identifies those who are within three months of release and might be suitable for an apprenticeship when they get out.
As part of the programme, participants are offered a wide range of development opportunities whilst in prison. These include:
- Masterclasses with trainers and employers on a range of hospitality topics.
- Support to access prison jobs or Release on Temporary Licence (ROTL) in hospitality.
- Help to prepare and submit apprenticeship/job applications.
- Meetings with employers to find out more about hospitality apprenticeships and setting up initial interviews.
- Support in the community to attend interviews and start apprenticeships, as well as wider pastoral and holistic support.
- Opportunities to join Forward’s peer support network, Forward Connect.
The programme will also help prepare people for the practical elements of what an apprenticeship will involve, so that by the time they are due for release they are ready to start an apprenticeship. These include food production skills, effective communication and first line supervision skills.
Once released, Umbrella will work with Forward’s Employment Coaches to connect people with suitable apprenticeships on release.
The PAP is being delivered in three prisons over the next two years: HMP Isis in London and HMPs Hollesley Bay and Highpoint, both in Suffolk. It will support 100 people with at least 50% starting an apprenticeship standard in the hospitality sector.
Adele Oxberry, chief executive and founder of Umbrella Training, said: “We’re delighted to be partnering with The Forward Trust to connect ex-offenders with employers in the hospitality sector and provide them with quality apprenticeships and experience. With our wealth of experience in the apprenticeship space and Forward’s history of supporting individuals to build positive and productive futures, we look forward to supporting prison leavers to gain apprenticeship qualifications and forging sustainable careers in the industry.”
Asi Panditharatna, executive director of employment services at Forward said: “This innovative new programme will enable prison leavers to access exciting apprenticeship roles and careers in the hospitality sector. It will be integrated into our existing Information, Advice and Guidance services. We are delighted to be working with Umbrella who are strongly committed to supporting social mobility and improving the life chances of those from disadvantaged backgrounds.”
About Umbrella Training
Umbrella Training is a nationwide training and apprenticeship provider for hospitality and corporate sectors, which develops tailored training programmes by working closely with businesses.
Founded in 2012 by Adele Oxberry FIH, the company works with hotels, restaurants, food service businesses and many corporate services organisations across the UK.
Since its inception, Umbrella Training has supported the recruitment, development and progression of more than 4,000 apprentices.
Through its apprenticeship training schemes, Umbrella Training is recognised as a GOOD provider by Ofsted and is one of the leading providers for the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) in the UK.