Monday, November 15, 2010

Working towards Independence

Two completely different events today, but with a link of sorts. 
I started with a meeting at Kirklevington Grange Prison to discuss the possibility of the prisoners making some signs and benches for the Parish Council - signs for St Margaret's Play area and benches for a variety of spots round the parish.  St Margaret's is suffering from a small number of thoughtless dog owners who don't keep their dogs on leads and in some cases let them foul the play area.  The hope is that some signs will serve as a reminder of the behaviour expected.  The prisoners make the signs and the benches while learning a skill and gaining a qualification which will help them to stay on the right side of the law in the future.  At the same time they pay back something into community which was injured by their crime.  My only regret on the visit is the ban on cameras means that I couldn't photograph any examples of the work they've already done for other places.  The quality was superb.  I look forward to being able to have the signs up in Eaglescliffe.
This afternoon Stockton's Governor support service had organised a full 7 hours of training with a "market place" to show the services available to help governors to help their schools.  The Fairtrade Borough Partnership had been given the chance to show what being a Fairtrade School involved and so, armed with a presentation on the journey taken by our first school - St Cuthbert's - we were there, ready to talk about the impact that Fairtrade schools have on the producers in the developing world.  Buying Fairtrade products here helps farmers and producers there to gain independence, move away from needing aid and live lives of dignity and productivity.
So there is a link, in my interest and in the end result of the two schemes.

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