At this week’s meeting, RCSE heard from visiting Rotarians Dave and Judy Hutton of Ipswich City Rotary Club in Australia. Dave and Judy are in Fiji for the second time this year to deliver Fiji Prisoner Upskilling trainings. The couple coordinate and run this program, which provides practical skills training to prison inmates who are due for release in the next six months. The training is under the banner of the Yellow Ribbon Program and is supported by the Commissioner of Corrections.
From July 14th-August 25th, they will work with men and women in Suva, Naboro, and Lautoka minimum and medium security prisons providing training in:
- Maintenance and repair of 2-stroke engines (outboards, brushcutters, and mowers)
- Beehive construction and beekeeping
- Life skills
- Computer literacy (introduction to windows, Microsoft Word, and email)
During their last trip they were able to train 115 inmates and they hope to reach many more this time. The Huttons have received sponsorship from Rotary Club of Ipswich City but are also seeking local support to provide toolkits and beekeeping equipment to trained participants upon their release. Rotary Club of Suva East will consider how we may be able to assist with this humanitarian mission. As Dave suggests, the are Fijians in need not of a hand-out, but a hand-up.