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Viridor’s Energy Recovery Facility (ERF) at Ardley near Bicester has hosted an educational tour for teaching staff and prison officers, as part of Milton Keynes College’s Offender Learning programme. The initiative, supported by the Teach Too Partnership and awarding body Waste Management Industry Training and Advisory Board, aims to encourage people from industry to share their working knowledge and build links between employers and training providers.
The Ardley ERF tour focussed on the energy recovery process, as well as other resource recovery practices. After a presentation and question and answer session, the group were able to walk through the facility and see the operation at close quarters.
Jessica Baker-Pike, Viridor’s Education and Visitor Centre Officer at Ardley, said: “This is the first visit to Ardley by the prison officers and Milton Keynes College staff and we are proud to be part an initiative to help to train the trainers. We know there will be a demand for workers in the recycling industry in the coming years and Viridor is pleased to be involved in any initiative which could help ex-offenders to settle back into the community.”
Maxine Bennett, Deputy Director of Milton Keynes College:Offender Learning programme said: “This is an excellent collaboration between all partners. Our tutors working in prisons rarely have the opportunity to see a top class facility such as Ardley ERF in action.
“The visit will enable them to use the knowledge and experience they have gained from their tour in their everyday teaching, so that their learners understand the value of waste and recycling.
“Our primary aim is the rehabilitation and resettlement of offenders. Some may want to work in the waste and recycling industry on their release and so this link with Viridor at Ardley is invaluable in being able to educate offenders further about the industry.”