Offender Rehabilitation Programmes

“I will not sit back and wait for life to happen to me again,” says Thembi (not her real name). “I will direct my life with purpose.”

The “life” that had happened to Thembi was one of crime. Sentenced to a custodial term, she seized the second chance that BOSASA’s rehabilitation programmes gave her. She turned her life around with guts, self-awareness, discipline and study. “My life and view of the future have changed completely. Crime is no longer an option.”

The physical, emotional and spiritual needs of people like Thembi motivate us. Our specialist staff apply the latest technology to manage their secure-care facilities. We prepare and serve thousands of nutritious meals three times a day to inmates. Our rehabilitation programmes not only equip offenders with educational and vocational skills, but prepare them for reintegration into society and for overcoming the stigma of incarceration.

Offender Chef Training

In prison Sibusiso (surname withheld) obtained a Diploma in Food Preparation and Culinary Arts, which covers all the elements of food preparation, service and kitchen management. Like other willing and deserving offenders, he was trained by BOSASA, in partnership with Stephen Billingham’s HTA School of Culinary Art. “The knowledge I gained from the training at BOSASA helped me to find my current employment,” says Sibusiso, now Chef de Partie at a holiday resort. Our training opens the door for graduates to work anywhere in the catering or hospitality industry as chefs.

Youth Development Centres

“I was given a second chance to prove that I could be a better person,” says Happy (surname withheld) of his time in a BOSASA Youth Development Centre. We run various programmes to equip young offenders with essential life skills and help them find suitable employment after release. We also guide their adult caregivers to smooth their reintegration into the community.

Anti-drug Campaign

Most young people in conflict with the law have a history of substance abuse. Addicts are prone to crime to feed their habit. BOSASA partnered with the National Prosecuting Authority to tackle substance abuse head on.

Young people from BOSASA Youth Development Centres, guided by social workers, use drama and their own stories to reach out to a wide range of schools. Having done drugs and crime themselves – and paying the price – these youngsters give compelling testimonies to coax their peers into seeking help and staying clean.

The Job Centre Trust

The Job Centre Trust is a partnership between BOSASA Group and other socially concerned industry leaders, Sector Education and Training Authorities (SETAs), NGOs and various institutions. The aim of this initiative is to:

  • link offenders back to their primary communities
  • promote accountability and insight into personal behaviour
  • equip offenders with work skills and prepare them for the economic market
  • discuss possible placement of effectively rehabilitated ex-offenders with diverse companies
  • Evidence shows that the positive relationships forged here often bring about happy endings.
  • Evidence shows that the positive relationships forged here often bring about happy endings.

Hlumani Initiatives

Hlumani is another collaboration between BOSASA, the government, local communities and the private sector. We help communities accept rehabilitated ex-offenders back so that they can use their newly acquired skills to start working and helping their nuclear and extended families. This is restorative justice.

Hlumani enables ex-offenders to make a positive difference in their local micro-economy. Skills, better self-esteem, self-sufficiency and healthy nutrition are all important in this process. That’s why Hlumani supports initiatives such as:

  • Waterval Vegetable Processing Plant
  • Waterval Butchery
  • Ekuseni Computer Training Facility
  • Crèche for mothers with babies in a correctional facility
  • Feeding schemes in impoverished schools in Pollsmoor and Atteridgeville

President’s Award for Youth Empowerment

BOSASA Operations has been an active partner of this registered non-profit organisation since 2006.

The President’s Award Programme encourages teenagers to:

  • participate in community service
  • play sports
  • increase their education and skills
  • contribute to leadership programmes and outdoor adventures

Participants are monitored and awarded points. Kefilwe Motsumi puts it plainly, “Take your destiny into your own hands and use the opportunities presented to you to write your future.”