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Empowering Parents Through Culinary Skills: NPTC Group of Colleges and Powys County Council Join Forces

Parents in Powys have been getting busy in the kitchen, not only developing their culinary and food hygiene skills but cultivating a community spirit and help in finding work too.

It’s as the result of a joint pilot training and recruitment project by NPTC Group of Colleges and Powys County Council (PCC) aimed at providing parents with the skills and experience to apply for jobs with PCC’s Catering Service and work in the school kitchens. The project also helped improve engagement between parents in the community.  

Under the guidance of NPTC Group of College’s Catering Manager, Martin White, parents from Ysgol Golwg y Cwm, Ysgol Trefonnen, and Newtown High School acquired essential cooking techniques, explored batch cooking methods, and obtained a Level 1 food hygiene qualification.

The initiative, which is part of the Community Focused Schools programme in Powys, saw enthusiastic involvement from parents, and not only equipped them with practical culinary skills but also inspired one participant to pursue employment opportunities within school kitchens, highlighting the project’s tangible impact on individual pathways.

Beyond culinary education, the project fostered well-being, promoted holistic development among participants, and cultivated a sense of community spirit.

Speaking about the various upsides for the project Martin was effusive in his enthusiasm about the well-being benefits of the project: “We were getting all these parents coming together. Generally, they would drop the kids off at school, they would go home, and they’d all be isolated. Within minutes of talking to each other they were all opening about their own issues with what they’re dealing with in life and their previous issues that they may have had. You could see the sense of community really coming out in the group.” From the work on this project Martin was nominated for an Inspire Tutor Award from the Learning and Work Institute.

Cllr Matthew Dorrance, Powys County Council’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for a Fairer Powys, said: “I’m delighted that we have joined forces with NPTC Group of Colleges to deliver this fantastic pilot project.

 “This is partnership working at its best which has seen parents develop essential skills and experience as well as gain an important qualification. This could lead to job opportunities within our catering service for those who attended but they can also use their new nutritional knowledge at home to benefit their families.”

Buoyed by its success, plans are underway to sustain and expand the initiative, with future iterations aiming to reach a wider audience across the Powys area.

This project has received £8,420 from the UK Government through the UK Shared Prosperity Fund

Partners include
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