News

A recipe for success

Chris Gordon, Arlene Edmondstone, Aaron Henderson, Kassie Connors and Damian Pearce have taken their new skills to the kitchen at Wollongbar TAFE.
Chris Gordon, Arlene Edmondstone, Aaron Henderson, Kassie Connors and Damian Pearce have taken their new skills to the kitchen at Wollongbar TAFE.

ABORIGINAL offenders at a correctional centre in Tabulam are getting a second chance at life through TAFE.

The recipe for their success is a partnership between Balund-a correctional centre, North Coast TAFE and Southern Cross High School distance education.

Balund-a houses male and female residents aged between 18 and 35 who are mainly from the Bundjalung nation.

Each week teachers travel to the correctional centre to provide classes on everything from literacy, numeracy, hospitality and tourism.

The hospitality students from Balund-a had the chance to show off their kitchen skills in a real restaurant at Wollongbar TAFE yesterday.

"It's important they see TAFE and know what it is like so they can feel comfortable about coming back here once they get out," TAFE programs co-ordinator Janine Laki said.

Bundjalung man Aaron Henderson is completing a Certificate Two in Hospitality through TAFE and hopes to open his own catering van.

"I've always been involved in hospitality and tourism but I never got into the cooking side of it. So this was a really good chance for me while I'm at Balund-a to pursue that and have a taste of a different career," Mr Henderson said.

Offenders can be sent to Balund-a after conviction or they can be sent there on bail before the magistrate decides upon a sentence

The aim is to try to keep Aboriginal people out of jail, because more than one in five inmates in NSW are of Aboriginal descent.

Ms Laki said the skills learnt at Balund-a are taken into account when offenders reappear for sentencing.

She said education can help people transform their lives, even if they have been on the wrong side of the criminal justice system.

"They're often intelligent and capable people who did not fit into the education system.

"Going back and re-engaging with education is a way for them to plan a future for themselves which doesn't involve going to jail."

Chef and cookery teacher Ian West said he's seen great results since he began teaching cooking at Balund-a 18 months ago.

"We have had students that have finished at Balund-a who have gone on to complete Certificate Two or Three in hospitality and with those qualifications they can take them on to an apprenticeship and work further in the industry."

Topics:  north coast tafe




Chaos erupts in parliament over Lismore signage

Greens mayoral candidate Vanessa Grindon-Ekins at Lismore and Villages sign at Hinterland Way

The Lismore signage debacle on Pacific Highway mocked in parliament

Why our Lismore MP Thomas George backs the greyhound ban

Lismore MP Thomas George said he supported the government on its decision to ban greyhound racing.

"I said I would clearly not be crossing the floor"

Latest deals and offers

The true cost of 60 Minutes debacle revealed

It's a bill that would make even a silk tied barrister blush

Yann Martel on novels: "Like building cathedrals in the mind”

Yann Martel is a Canadian author best known for the Man Booker Prize-winning novel Life of Pi, an international bestseller published in more than 50 territories.

The writer of Life of Pi introduces his new novel in Byron Bay

Kirk Douglas is defiant, fierce and still standing

VETERAN ACTOR: Kirk Douglas has had a long and varied career.

Kirk Douglas has out-lived almost all his contemporaries

The Hard Word reviews Kyzer Soze

Kyzer Soze are playing Brisbane tomorrow at the Crowbar in Fortitude Valley. Photo Contributed

Kyzer Soze summon the evil for this mighty slab of death metal

Britney Spears 'almost drowned' in Hawaii

Britney Spears has revealed she 'almost drowned' while on holiday

ISLAND FOR SALE: Cheap Fraser Coast island drops price again

Suna Island in the Great Sandy Strait will be auctioned by Ray White Hervey Bay on Saturday morning.

This is the cheapest island you will find for sale in Australia

How a family home can fit on a 250sq m block

This is what you can build on 250m2.

Here's the floor plan of a home built on 250sq m

Investors eye Gladstone's $4m island with resort approval

UP FOR SALE: Turtle Island is on the market.

CHINESE and Sydney investors flag interest in Gladstone island.

Take a sneak peek at this $19m Whitsunday mansion

Mandalay House features a private helipad.

Mandalay is currently on the market with an asking price of $19m

Guess which Sunshine Coast suburb cracked the million dollar list?

This four-bedroom home at 26 McAnally Dr, Sunshine Beach was for sale for $7 million.

List of Australia's five most-expensive suburbs

Does it get any better than this? Check out this $2M home

LUXURY LIVING: The Coral Cove home built by Steve Coates Constructions that took out the best home over $2 million and the Wide Bay Burnett House of the Year at the Master Builders Wide Bay Burnett Housing and Construction Awards.

Wide Bay's best home is right on our doorstep