Education Award 2017

The food and drink community celebrated success on 21 September 2017 as the winners of the Food and Drink Federation Awards were announced.

Central England Co-operative

Central England Co-operative “SENse to Aspire Scheme” is an award-winning scheme which supports students through classroom employability sessions and work experience. The scheme has supported 166 students with special educational needs since its establishment in 2014, as a partnership between Central England Co-operative and Selly Oak Trust School, facilitated by Business in the Community (BITC).

The scheme was based on a needs-based analysis run by the school and facilitated by BITC, and has been designed to incorporate the needs of both employers and employees in order to be as realistic and supportive as possible. It includes a variety of roles in a retail store and a florist.

The school had difficulty finding employers to provide work experience opportunities and Central England Co-operative takes pride in working with the students to increase their confidence and develop their skills. The programme also has an important impact of Central England Co-operative staff by raising awareness about learning difficulties and disabilities, as well as being a positive and enriching experience. The scheme is now growing and being expanded to other schools in the trading area, and has a measured social return on investment (SROI) of £17.49 for every £1 spent.

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Last reviewed: 21 Sep 2016