River Cottage to launch traineeship scheme in January

Bridport and Lyme Regis News: COTTAGE INDUSTRY: Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s River Cottage COTTAGE INDUSTRY: Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s River Cottage

A NEW “traineeship” scheme launched by River Cottage is hoping to bridge the gap between education and employment for young people.

The scheme is available to everyone aged 16-18 across both Dorset and Devon, and will run from the end of January for three months until March.

Following the traineeship scheme graduates can sign up for the chef apprenticeship that River Cottage run, or can leave and use the skills they learnt from the course as they seek full-time employment.

Chris Griffin, Head of Education at River Cottage, said: “It is so important to offer opportunities to young people who are struggling to find employment or access to apprenticeship schemes. I believe this will really support learning and progression within our local community.”

Eighteen students will be enrolled on the traineeship scheme, which aims to provide the students with employable skills that will improve the chances of getting an apprenticeship or becoming employed once they have graduated.

Pupils will undertake lessons in interview skills, CV writing skills, how to search for jobs properly, and it will also take them on work experience at the River Cottage, where they will also gain basic kitchen skills learn basic food hygiene.

The apprenticeship scheme run by River Cottage HQ for the first time this year has been a great success with more than 70 future chefs enrolled on the course.

Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, founder of River Cottage, said: “We’ll be guiding our trainees in all the issues at which River Cottage excels – seasonality, ethical and local sourcing, regional ingredients and traditional, hands-on techniques.

“It’s a new step for us that I’m very excited about. After all, if we can inspire and inform the up-and-coming chefs of the UK, and beyond, they in turn can delight thousands, maybe even millions, of diners, all over the world.”

Mr Griffin added: “The apprenticeship scheme last year was really well received, and the chefs that were enrolled on it are continuing to go from strength to strength, and we have some great talent coming through.

“What we found from our apprenticeship course was that young people may have the ambition to become a chef, but find the transition from education to employment quite difficult.

“They found it very, very tough and therefore were not properly equipped to succeed, and that is why we have brought this traineeship scheme in.”

Places on the course are available to anyone who is aged 16-18, and is not currently in full-time education.

The places are free but there is a limited availability.

For more information or to book a place contact Terri Tipping on 01297 630313 or terri.tipping@river cottage.net


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