November 02, 2017
Sweet future for beekeeping inmates
The future might be sweet for a group of prisoners at Auckland Women’s Jail.
They graduated yesterday as beekeepers with a diploma from the Telford agricultural training school.
Mike Williams from the Howard League for Penal Reform, which arranged for the course run by expert apiarist Brian Alexander, says because of the huge demand for manuka honey they can be assured of finding jobs when they get out.
The course, which is also run at Paremoremo men’s prison, is proving particularly useful for Maori prisoners who want to get back to their tribal areas.
"There’s a lot of waste land owned by iwi which hasn’t really been much good for anything but is covered in manuka so you’ve got a new industry building up in those regions which is really job-rich and these people who graduate from their prison beekeeping course are ready to go into that industry, earn good money," Mr Williams says.
There are also graduations coming up for inmates who have been taking literacy courses, including some who have been learning te reo Maori using Scotty Morrison’s Maori Made Easy book.
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