Fulcrum Scaffold Safety & Training Ltd are leading the way in training young prisoners awaiting release after HMP/YOI Thorn Cross and HMP Lancaster Farms have become CISRS COTS accredited centres as part of the Made Inside Britain (MIB) project.
An innovative partnership between New Futures Network, Antz Junction, Fulcrum Scaffold & Safety Ltd and the two prisons, have designed and invested in employer-led workshops called Real Work Environments (RWE’s) creating clear job outcomes for participants in the sector.
These are the first CISRS centres to be located in a prison establishment. Participants are taking part in practical scaffolding training and leaving with a CISRS COTS card and real-life work experience leading to full-time, sustainable employment.
The first Real Work Environment launched at HMP/YOI Thorn Cross on the 4th April with nine men all who expressed an interest in a career in scaffolding and who are extremely motivated to learn new skills. Following the successful training, all nine men have been matched with a job on release.
After delivering the first course at HMP Thorn Cross, Fulcrum’s Managing Director, Dave Abraham, said “it was a pleasure to deliver the course, the lads are a great bunch and are keen to integrate back into society up on their release. The course is held over 5 days, during which the candidates are given practical hands-on experience, achieving a CISRS COTS card and GQA Level 1 Health and Safety in a Construction Environment.
We are pleased to announce that all those who attended the course have been offered employment with the following companies: Allied Access, Connolly Scaffolding, PDL Scaffolding and Gorilla Scaffolding. I would like to thank these companies for their support and for recognising that prison leavers deserve the opportunity of employment”
Dave went on to say: “Our staff at Fulcrum have put a lot of time and commitment into this project but we would not have been able to make this happen without the support from CITB and Procure Plus (Wiktor Morrell & Simon O’Donnell)”.
Tim Bailey, Business Manager, Made Inside Britain, Greater Manchester, Merseyside, Cheshire, Cumbria and Lancashire Prison Groups commented: “I am very excited by the potential of this initiative and what can be achieved.
Ultimately, we want to increase employer confidence in the value of employing prison leavers, which to this point is a largely untapped employment market. We also want to ensure there is improved workforce retention among prison leavers and that they get the qualifications and skills needed to enter the local labour market.”
Employment Manager, HMP Thorn Cross said “Our aim as an open prison is to support those in our care to return to society with all that they need to live purposeful, crime-free lives. Stable, meaningful employment is a key part of this. Having worked with Made Inside Britain and Fulcrum Scaffolding from the outset, it’s clear the opportunities provided will make a real difference to the men in offering something they know will lead them into employment.
Both the MiB team and Fulcrum have, from the start, put the men’s needs first, even securing employment for one man before the course started! Their drive to help our men succeed is evident both in discussions with staff and prisoners and in their delivery of the qualification and work. We look forward to continuing this partnership in the future and seeing the successes of our men in their new jobs!”
The MiB team recognise that providing skills and employment is only part of what is required to break the cycle of reoffending.
An integral part of the project is to provide wraparound support to those prisoners as they progress through the gate and back into society. This support is provided by Antz Junction, a North West based charity.
Their through the gate support covers employment, education and training, housing, health and well-being, finance and benefits and most importantly being that trusted person that our participants can come to when needed.
Alongside through the gate support, prison leavers are given the opportunity to be matched with a business mentor who will provide an extra layer of support into employment and beyond.
This extra layer of support helps to overcome personal barriers and break the cycle of re-offending.
Working with the Made Inside Britain project could give your business access to a rich and often talented pool of people looking for work upon release from prison. This is an opportunity to fill a skills shortage that could result in business growth and supporting the local community.
Email [email protected] now to find out more.