Yellow Ribbon Singapore: 1st ex-offender batch cooks up 2nd chances

The pristine white chef’s aprons had crisp creases on them, obviously freshly laundered. When the chefs spoke, their words had an amiable, unmistakably Singaporean flavour. Most obvious, though, was the buzz of excitement and accomplishment that seemed to run through the group of 7, all ex-offenders.

Yellow Ribbon Singapore trainees
Credit – Yellow Ribbon Singapore

Wednesday, 22 Nov was a special day for this group as Yellow Ribbon Singapore (YRSG) was signing an MOU with Nanyang Polytechnic’s Asian Culinary Institute (NYP-ACI).

This trailblazing initiative is going to transform the food and beverage industry, which is noted for its HR challenges, by building avenues to success for ex-offenders who are overlooked all too often.

Yellow Ribbon Singapore MOU
Credit – Yellow Ribbon Singapore

There to witness the signing by YRSG’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr Sunny Lee and NYP’s Principal and CEO, Mr Russell Chan was Guest-of-Honour Ms Low Yen Ling, Minister of State for Culture, Community and Youth & Trade and Industry.

Highest paying jobs in F&B: The sweetest work in Singapore

This collaboration is an extension of YRSG’s TAP (Train and Place) & Grow initiative. Inmates are not just acquiring skills; they’re crafting a new recipe for their lives that will become a transition into the food services industry upon release.

NYP-ACI conducts its F&B training within the grounds of Changi Prison Complex. Inmates learn under the skilled guidance of the institute, earning certifications such as the Workforce Skills Qualification (WSQ) Higher Certificate in Food Services (Culinary Arts). 

It has now expanded to include an immersive 2.5-month work-study program, setting the stage for further culinary pursuits, including the coveted Diploma in Food Services (Culinary Arts).

Yellow Ribbon Singapore - food
Credit – Yellow Ribbon Singapore

Around 700 inmates annually will be able to take advantage of the NYP-ACI courses while incarcerated as well as beyond prison walls. Graduates armed with skills and certifications will be ideally placed to find employment in the food services industry.

For its part, YRSG extends its commitment beyond education to community integration, career fairs, and job placement services. Mr Sunny Lee emphasised the importance of this multifaceted approach to the successful reintegration of ex-offenders into society.

“With the necessary support and guidance, ex-offenders can become contributing members of society. We encourage all employers to embrace inclusive hiring and offer career opportunities to ex-offenders. Be it through hiring, mentorship, sharing industry insights, or exploring potential collaborations, together, we can create a positive impact.”

Yellow Ribbon Singapore GoH and food
Credit – Yellow Ribbon Singapore

It was a pleasure to watch the beaming faces underneath those towering chef’s hats as we oohed and aahed over their creative dishes. This partnership isn’t just about certificates and the group of 7 is celebrating so much more than graduation from culinary school. We wish them the best.

Would your business or organisation like to partner with Yellow Ribbon Singapore? You can contact them here.

Best things to do in Singapore

Yellow Ribbon Singapore

980 Upper Changi Road North, Singapore 507708

Yellow Ribbon Singapore

980 Upper Changi Road North, Singapore 507708

Telephone: 1800 741 5567
Operating Hours: 9am - 12.30pm & 2pm - 6pm (Daily)
Telephone: 1800 741 5567

Operating Hours: 9am - 12.30pm & 2pm - 6pm (Daily)
| Instagram | Website

Newest