A local initiative that gives ex-offenders a chance to turn their lives around has won the Heart of Salford Social Enterprise award.
I’ve just found this list of nominees for Social Enterprise of The Year at #HeartofSalford awards, totally blown away to have won against such a strong group of amazing #socialenterprises. I couldn’t make it myself but sent one of our amazing team, Chris to represent us. #proud pic.twitter.com/x1u5lHBvH2 — HMPasties (@HMPasties) November 21, 2018
H.M.Pasties aim to give offenders support and opportunities to get back on to their feet, and into society providing them with skills that will prevent them from returning to a life of crime.
They source all of their ingredients from HMP Kirkham, meaning that they not only help people once they are out, but they help increase employment and training opportunities within the prison itself.
Lee Wakeham, an ex-offender who moved to Salford in 1996, set the initiative up and said that it “came about from an idea to combine two of my passions, rehabilitation and pasties!”
H.M.Pasties has gone from strength to strength since forming. They have gone from a small kitchen in a church called the Roby Centre, to having their own prep kitchen and a road side pitch five days a week in Greengate, Salford, as well as supplying food for FC United of Manchester for all of their home matches. They are soon to open their first shop in Droylsden.
“I’m incredibly proud of the whole team! To be recognised in the city I moved to all those years ago to get myself out of trouble, to have been up against a very strong list of other social enterprises and walk away a winner is truly unbelievable.” said Wakeham
H.M.Pasties are largely funded by Groundwork and other charitable income, but this is something that Lee hopes to change: “Our short term aim is to become a self funded business.” Winning the Heart of Salford award could help achieve this goal. “The Heart of Salford award will raise our profile in the City and grab the attention of businessmen who use catering companies.”
They are an ambitious group that are looking to build upon their success and their long term aims are to use the income that they generate to create more opportunities for people with criminal convictions.
“We want to employ people from prison for up to 12 months and build a network of local employers, who will offer jobs to our staff once they have completed their training with us. Staff will leave us with the skills and attitude required to develop a career in the food industry.”
For more information visit The H.M Pasties website.