A group of service users at the Bretton Centre in Wakefield have successfully gained a new qualification in food safety.
After expressing an interest in gaining a qualification in food safety an occupational therapist at the Bretton Centre enrolled the help of the Trust’s food hygiene trainer Janet Marsh to facilitate a training group.
Janet worked with the group to deliver training in food preparation and storage, as well as how to maintain good hand hygiene within a cooking environment. It can be difficult going back to learning after a number of years, but each member of the group showed a commitment to the course and sessions were adapted to meet their individual learning needs. As a result all group members were successful in passing the course.
The group was presented with their individual certificates by Janet at a special session to mark their hard work and success.
Speaking about the course occupational therapist Paula Barratt and technical instructor Dan Bullock, who helped facilitate the course, said, "These service users have shown exactly what can be achieved through occupation, adaptation and support. Through occupation, people can achieve fantastic results and it can have lifelong effects. We’re really proud of them. The group gained excellent results and their new qualifications may open up avenues for work or further qualifications in the catering trade. It’s a tremendous achievement."
The course demonstrates a flexible approach to meeting the needs and desires of service users. It represents a philosophy of recovery and return to community living through the creation of meaningful and productive life skills.
Since starting the course participants have been able to apply their knowledge in cooking sessions, which have helped reinforce the importance of good food hygiene. Each member of the group has since shown an interest in completing level 2 of the food hygiene certificate and plans have been made to start this soon.
Neil, who attended the group, said, "The training was really well thought out and well prepared by Janet so that we were able to cover lots of different areas of food hygiene."
Food hygiene trainer Janet Marsh added, "Cross contamination is the main focus of the training and encouraging participants to take note of basic guidelines when dealing with food. This includes making sure their hands are washed thoroughly, and that they do not use the same chopping board for raw and ready to eat foods. High standards of food hygiene practice are essential for the wellbeing of people who use our services, the peace of mind of families, the confidence of our organisation and the motivation of staff."