BR6 students create festive hampers for Bexley care leavers

Hospitality and catering students from London South East Colleges’ flagship Hospitality, Food and Enterprise Career College, spent much of their final week before the Christmas holidays, baking shortbreads, red velvet cakes, double choc and raspberry macaroons, chocolate truffles and a traditional Christmas cake for a special Christmas day celebration and dinner event for a group of care leavers from south east London.

Staff from Bexley Children’s Services department have invited former looked-after children, who are now young adults leaving the Council’s care, for Christmas lunch. They wanted to catch up with each of them, throw a lavish feast and treat them to an afternoon of music, games and festive cheer.

Jacky Tiotto is the Director of Children’s Services at the London Borough of Bexley and will be cooking at the event on Christmas Day with a team of volunteers from Bexley Children’s Services.

She said: “Thank you very much to the staff and students who have made all this delicious food. This is what the word ‘community’ really means to us. I would like to organise in 2019 for the young chefs to come along and meet personally the young people they have cooked for. This is truly wonderful and very much appreciated.”

Reese Dowsing, 16, and Hanna Hone, 17, are both studying the Catering (Culinary Skills) Level 1 Certificate based in our BR6 Restaurant and Bakehouse at the College’s Orpington Campus. They have been working closely with their tutor and sous-chef Kirstie Ison to prepare and complete the order in time for this week’s collection date.

Kirstie said: “Not only have the students worked very hard to produce all of these delicious festive delights, they have also gained lots of new skills and applied them to what is essentially a fairly large order. Christmas is a busy time of year for caterers and they have received a taste of what it can be like to bake and decorate a variety of different patisserie items, under pressure, for a certain type of occasion. Considering this is only their first term, I would say they have done magnificently well.

“I hope that the young people who will be receiving the hampers on Christmas Day thoroughly enjoy them.”

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