Life at Romsey Mill Centre is never dull. There is always something exciting and vibrant taking place.
Different noises reflect a wide range of activities: the sound of table tennis being played by one of the youth groups; the noise of children enjoying play and crafts in Pre-School; the chatter of parents and toddlers during Stay and Play in the Children’s Centre; or the rhythmic music being created in our studio.
Recently, the smell of delicious food being cooked has added to the sensory indications that good things are happening. Nine young people from Coleridge Community College on Romsey Mill’s Step-Up alternative education programme have just completed their Jamie Oliver cooking award, which included preparing a meal for 20 people.
Six of the young people completed Level 1 and three took their Level 2. As part of the award, the young people have been taught about hygienic food preparation, meal planning, tips about economising, nutrition, and presentation skills.
Last month, they all planned, prepared and served a two-course meal for staff at Romsey Mill, who also acted as independent observers for the students. The meal of chicken fajitas and sticky toffee pudding tasted as delicious as it smelled.
Naomi Message, Youth Development Worker, says: “The young people really love cooking, but didn’t believe that they could achieve something like this. Seeing how proud they were to serve a meal for 20 and to get positive individual feedback from staff on how well they’d done was a great encouragement.“