HMP Low Moss Employability Event

HMP Low Moss hosted an employability event on Tuesday 28th June to review progress since the last event in February 2015, whilst further developing and creating new partnerships with likeminded individuals and organisations.

The event was opened by the Chief Executive of the SPS Colin McConnell, and was attended by over 100 delegates from a range of organisations and employers such as Shaw Trust, WAMITAB, (Waste Management Industry Training and Advisory Board) Haven Recycling, Scotland Excel, Cauda Recourse Management, Community Jobs Scotland, Skills Development Scotland to name but a few who are committed to the delivery of opportunities for individuals on release from custody.

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During the Chief Executive’s opening speech he delivered a vision on how Low Moss community enterprise models, employability partnerships and collection of commercial agreements have provided real sustainable work focused environments. Creating the experience for prisoners building on their assets and developing strong employability characteristics. He also spoke of how the SPS and their partners are truly determined to work in this way, and the need to replace resentment with acceptance and place emphasis on the rehabilitation of those who have committed offences through constructive integration and the acceptance of their own 'redemption script'. We must afford them the opportunity to be trusted to direct and control their own destinies.

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The event also had had some key note speakers such as Alistair Kerr the chairman of BASE Scotland (British Association for Supported Employment) Alistair delivered a key speech on the opportunities for the BASE network to assist the SPS is delivering some of its strategic goals for employability set through Scottish Government. He went on to confirm their commitment as an organisation in partnership with the SPS to deliver opportunities that will create a better and safer Scotland.

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Mark Hyde the commercial director of WAMITAB also announced at the event the launch of the WAMITAB Academy within Low Moss the first WAMITAB Academy in Scotland. Mark spoke in great detail of the successes with Low Moss who are delivering industry recognised qualification and the transition of suitably qualified prisoners moving into employment on release

There was some powerful messages delivered by key note speakers and partners Shaw Trust delivered on the employability partnership pilot that ran so successfully and delivered recommendations for moving forward.

The event continued with other key note speakers Michael Hollinger from Community Jobs Scotland and Matt Fountain who is delivering in partnership with Low Moss the first community enterprise model called Freedom Bakery.

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The event also brought back two individuals who had previously been in custody, who had reintegrated back to their communities but more importantly into employment. The interview carried out by Martin Forrest allowed Robert and Kevin to explain to delegates how they have grasped the opportunities that have come their way and delivered real change for them and their families. Their endeavours and honesty were warmly received by the hall, and further cemented delegates commitment, energy and focus on the delivery of these opportunities for offenders on release.

Low Moss and the SPS would like to thank all those organisations and individuals who have committed to working with us in the delivery of unlocking potential, transforming lives.