Top Chef Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen Cornwall has won an award at the Europe wide RegioStars 2014 in the ‘Inclusive growth: Creating jobs for the young generation' category.
Fifteen Cornwall is a social enterprise which aims to inspire via food and offers a chance for disadvantaged young people to transform their lives by becoming chefs. Run by the charity Cornwall Food Foundation, the restaurant – which uses Jamie Oliver’s international brand - was originally set up using European Social and European Regional Development Fund (ESF and ERDF) investment.
Since May 2006, the programme has enrolled more than 140 apprentices with 80% still cooking today. The Fifteen Cornwall Apprenticeship Programme is about to start training its 9th cohort of future chefs. Fifteen Cornwall also invests £1million per annum back into the local economy through a 70% local sourcing policy and has created 80 jobs in addition to the 86 apprenticeships so far completed.
European Commissioner for Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion László Andor said: "To be prosperous the tourism sector requires a skilled workforce, which is precisely the aim of the Fifteen Cornwall project. Creating jobs for the younger generation is an area of particular importance for the new generation of European Social Fund investments. Together with additional funding from the Youth Employment Initiative, European regions will be able to use the ESF to finance concrete projects and actions to make a real difference where unemployment is the most acute. I would like to congratulate all the participants, finalists and winners who are making the EU's Cohesion Policy a reality."
The annual Regiostars awards, run by the European Commission, aim to identify good practices in regional development and to highlight original and innovative projects which could be attractive and inspiring to other regions.