In 2006 Jamie Oliver was the most popular TV chef of the moment. So when he announced that his new restaurant, Fifteen, would be staffed by ex-cons he made quite a ripple across the world. Many clientele and those in Foodservice thought it was a PR stunt, designed to pull in the masses with ‘novelty’ value. But in actual fact, this was (and is still) a part of the JO empire – it’s a social enterprise. With the bonus of great food and stunning views. This particular venture offers vulnerable people (plenty of whom have served time in prison or suffer from drug, alcohol and/or anger issues) an opportunity to better themselves. To find new focus and passion in life through work in the restaurant and apprenticeships, run alongside. And this is not the only place that offers these life-changing chances.
Anyone who has ever been involved in Foodservice or the hospitality industry knows that comradery is a huge part of what makes it tick. Kitchen, waiting, bar, reception, sommelier, and hotel staff work as one big team in the establishments that really excel in what they do. This group mentality is not confined within four walls – it spans the globe, through hospitality charities.