Singapore, 20 September 2019 – Sodexo and Samsui Supplies & Services Pte Ltd (Samsui) have jointly launched a creative Train and Place programme to equip persons with disabilities with the relevant skills for a career in the F&B industry.

The Samsui-Sodexo partnership leverages on Samsui’s experience in the F&B and social sectors and Sodexo’s global expertise in providing food services and its robust standards of health and safety. Over six months, trainees will be exposed to various modules in F&B culinary skills and operations, gaining insights into working in the industry. The course will be the initial step towards opening multiple career pathways for the trainees in the F&B sector.


The first batch of trainees have begun their classes on 4th September at the Samsui Centre of Hospitality. The trainees will gain exposure to culinary modules such as safety and hygiene, inventory management, food preparation and culinary techniques. The course methodology will include integrated learning at an incremental pace in both classroom and kitchen environments, followed by on-the-job training with a mentor in a controlled work environment.


Upon completion of the course, trainees will either continue to pursue other courses or be matched to suitable job placements in Sodexo’s broad network of partners in hospitals, multi-national corporations or schools, or a partner network of F&B operators sourced through Samsui. They also have the option of seeking employment in the training kitchen.


The Samsui-Sodexo partnership is done with the support of SG Enable. Part of the Open Door Programme Job Redesign Grant – administered by SG Enable and funded by the Government – supported the installation of knee-operating hand sinks in the training kitchen at Enabling Village, to cater to persons with disabilities who have difficulty in using their upper limbs. Samsui also benefits from the SG Enable Training Grant for Training Providers, and SG Enable will provide job support services to persons with disabilities and employers.


hands-on demonstration


The partnership was officially launched by Mr Edwin Tong S.C., Senior Minister of State, Ministry of Law and Ministry of Health, during a launch event at the Enabling Village. Mr Tong toured the Samsui Kitchen and witnessed a session where trainees learnt the art of making lotus paste buns, using colourful edible dough.


The Samsui-Sodexo partnership is part of the “through train” training and employment programme for persons with disabilities announced by Samsui in August this year, in collaboration with Standard Chartered Bank and SG Enable. Having met through the National Volunteer & Philanthropy Centre’s (NVPC) Company of Good Fellowship, Sodexo and Samsui discovered that this collaboration could leverage on their respective resources and strengths to give back to the community. The Company of Good Fellowship is a talent development programme that seeks to develop a community of corporate leaders who will strengthen the eco-system of giving in Singapore.


As a world leader in food services, Sodexo provides over 100 million meals daily to consumers in 72 countries. Established in Singapore since 1982, Sodexo provides quality, nutritious meals to consumers in diverse environments. With Sodexo as its partner, Samsui is confident that the curriculum of the training programme will be world-class and suitably developed to cater to the learning requirements of the persons with disabilities.


Johnpaul Dimech, Country President, Sodexo Singapore, said:
“Sodexo is excited to partner with Samsui to share our global expertise and love of food with the trainees. Inclusive training and hiring are key drivers of sustainable business. Through this partnership, we foster a supportive eco-system to develop the trainees. By matching the trainees with suitable F&B positions after they complete the course, we help create an environment for the trainees to maximise their full potential.”


Food produced in Samsui Kitchen by programme trainees and other full-time employees, will be delivered fresh to Sodexo and Samsui’s network of dining establishments daily. At full capacity, the kitchen’s production can go up to 9,000 meals a day. Incorporating the trainees in a real-time supply chain network is testament to the partners’ commitment to inclusive hiring which will help to address the manpower crunch as businesses start to view persons with disabilities as a viable manpower source.


Ang Kian Peng, Director, Samsui Supplies & Services Pte Ltd, said:
“With 29 years’ experience in the F&B industry and 6 years’ experience in the social sector, Samsui is well-placed to run this programme. Together with Sodexo as our partner, we hope to build the trainees’ independence through this programme and open up more job opportunities for them. We also hope to inspire other businesses to explore training and employing persons with disabilities as part of their workforce. Together we can prioritise competencies over limitations.”


Samsui’s over-3,000 sq. ft. hot and cold kitchen at the Enabling Village, a community space managed by SG Enable, will be the work environment site for the trainees during their course. It is equipped with facilities that mirror kitchens in commercial settings and has been adapted to meet the needs of users who could possess various degrees of disability across the physical and cognitive spectrum.


Ms Ku Geok Boon, Chief Executive Officer, SG Enable, said:
“The Enabling Village was set up to serve as a focal point for services for persons with disabilities, especially in training and employment. We are delighted that the universally designed environment and the network of like-minded partners in the Enabling Village have successfully catalysed new training models such as this Samsui-Sodexo partnership.”   
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