A sweet partnership - RedLaw and Rise Bakery

Here at Rise Bakery our customers are very special to us, not only for buying our delicious brownie boxes, but also by supporting our trainee schemes for people affected by homelessness. This week we went to visit Dee from RedLaw Recruitment, our regular customer and partner company, to find out more about why they choose to support Rise Bakery and Providence Row...

 

What does RedLaw Recruitment do and what is your role there?

We are an executive legal recruiter based in London working with law firms to assist them in attracting the best talent. We also work with associate lawyers and partners of law firms to help them secure their next move within their professional careers.

I am RedLaw’s marketing manager and look after internal communications, branding, content, web and social media, advertising etc. As we’re a small team I also pick up some other responsibilities such as coordinating our relationships with charities such as Providence Row and Rise Bakery.

Why do you send Rise brownies to your candidates on their first day in their new job?

We have supported Providence Row for several years and when we heard about their Rise Bakery we thought it was the perfect fit for us. It seemed an excellent way to extend our support for the charity.

We pride ourselves on working in collaboration with candidates searching for new roles. And we can work with them for months at a time to find the perfect fit for them and the law firms they work for. We often form long-lasting relationships with them and aim to provide them with a high level of service. We thought it was a lovely gesture to give candidates another reward once the hard work of getting a new role – all the applications, interviews and meetings – is done. It’s a nice little surprise gift to them on their first day to wish them luck. They can also share it with their new colleagues to help break the ice on their first day in a new office. Obviously they taste amazing as well.

Rise Brownies also come with a story behind them. There’s a leaflet with a quote from a former trainee talking about how the bakery has helped him get back into work and accommodation. Our candidates always thank us and comment on the story behind the brownies. It’s a great talking point and we get lots of lovely feedback which we send on to the team at the bakery.

What made you choose Rise Bakery?

There was a strong synergy between the two organisations. We are helping people into new roles, and so are Providence Row and Rise Bakery.  We loved the idea that Providence Row’s clients are working in the bakery and that by buying the brownies, we are helping to fund people’s training and help them back into the world of work.

How else do you support Providence Row and Rise Bakery?

We also support Providence Row’s ‘Working on It scheme’, a 10-week employability course open to trainees and people using the daycentre. The scheme includes a range of workshops run by centre staff and company partners around searching for jobs, building a CV, interview skills and much more. We’ve be supporting the interview workshops on a quarterly basis. Two of our consultants, Adam and Raj, attended one recently and went through CVs, set up a mock interview panel and gave interview technique tips to two trainees. One trainee in particular was very nervous before he started, but once he relaxed he interviewed really well. He came across as friendly, responsible and a team player. He would make an excellent member of a team. We fed this back and he came out of the workshop more confident about future job interviews.

Our recruitment consultants help the trainees figure out what their strengths are and what they could say in response to standard questions. They can also advise on the qualities employers are looking for such as reliability and honesty. Trainees can then develop a list of keywords to focus on during their interview. Sometimes people aren’t used to selling themselves, they can’t put into words why they’d make an excellent employee. Our recruitment advisers can help them find those words so they’re better prepared for their interviews.

What advice would you give to our trainees about finding a new job in the future?

We always advise our candidates and the trainees we meet in the workshops to be unique. People are attracted to people and everyone has got different strengths and qualities. No one person is the same and no one job is the same so be yourself and stand out from the crowd. We could have five candidates going for the same role all with the same experience and skills, but the person who gets the job will be the one who the interviewers think will fit best with the organisation and the rest of the team. The trainees we have worked with have so many great strengths and qualities, the challenge is helping them to see them, and to find the words to show them off at interview (which doesn’t always come naturally or easily). It’s a matter of practise, and we’re very proud to be helping people to do this in the safe, supportive environment of Providence Row.

What our team said about RedLaw recruitment?

‘RedLaw Recruitment are our idea of the perfect customers. We love that they congratulate their candidates with a Rise Brownie box, and that way directly help to support and spread the word about our trainee schemes for people affected by homelessness. They also get involved with our employability schemes, sharing their skills and experience with the people we’re working with, who are trying hard to get back into work, training and education.’ 
– Dom, Enterprise and Training Manager

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‘Having RedLaw Recruitment involved with our “Working on it” programme has been incredibly helpful for the people taking part. Many have never been given any guidance around interviews techniques before, so getting advice from experts in this area is incredibly helpful and can make a real, tangible difference to their confidence. Our trainees come out of the interview training session with a renewed confidence in themselves and their ability to find employment in the future.’ 
– Asia, Employability Coordinator
 

A 'tight, supportive community' for our trainees

Rise Bakery is part of Providence Row, a charity that has offered trainee schemes to people affected by homelessness, regardless of their support needs, for more than 6 years. 

We wanted to find out more about how our trainee schemes help support people with mental health issues, so we caught up Alana, an Occupational Therapist at Chase Farm Hospital’s forensic mental health service, to find out why she refers people into our schemes. 

“My work varies from patient to patient but my main objective is to help people develop their independent life skills to get them ready to move back into the community. I work on a rehab ward which runs activities including cooking skills, but in addition to this we take them back out into the community to find services they can work with as well as work experience placement opportunities such as Providence Row.” 

Here at Providence Row (the home of Rise Bakery) we pride ourselves on offering a safe, welcoming space for people to build up their skills and confidence. Alana explains. “They give patients the opportunity to get off the ward and do a ‘structured activity’ away from the hospital. It helps them feel as though they are independent in the community and this is really important for them. It’s a gradual process and takes time. 

Our trainee schemes in catering and baking help people develop transferable skills, but for Alana’s patients, they also help them start to think about what they might want to do when they leave hospital.

“A lot of patients want to do paid work, but it might not be appropriate for them yet and Providence Row is a great starting point for them.”
 
Trainees can also take advantage of our other services, including IT lessons, help with getting into work, training or further education and support with mental health and substance misuse issues. We work hard to make sure our schemes are accessible to everyone and that our trainees feel safe and supported while they’re with us. Alana describes how one trainee had experienced abusive comments and a lack of support at another work placement. But at Providence Row and Rise Bakery, he has been able to flourish:

“When he started working with Asia at Providence Row, he saw that not all places were like his previous work experience placement. Now he’s got so much confidence and he is excited about the future and wants to try new things. He feels valued as a trainee at Providence Row. Soon he’s going to be discharged from hospital and that will be a big change for him, but being involved with Providence Row will give him some continuity after he leaves hospital. He’ll have somewhere familiar to go to and people he can trust to talk to as he adapts to his new life.”
 
When we asked Alana whether she would recommend our trainee schemes to other therapists, she said she would ‘absolutely’. 

“At Providence Row they support our patients properly. They are part of a tight, supportive community. It’s a place where they can feel normal again.” She continues.

It’s great to hear from Alana about how we’re helping support her great work with some of Chase Farm’s patients and we’re looking forward to continuing to work with her long into the future.

If you want to find out more about Providence Row’s trainee schemes you can visit our other website www.providencerow.org.uk to find out more.
 

Last orders for Christmas

Happy Holidays everyone!

We hope you’ve got some fun festivities ahead of you.

As we’re a small community bakery we will be closing over Christmas to give our bakers a well deserved rest. We will be turning off the oven and hanging up our chef’s hats on Tuesday 20 December. Never fear though because we’ll be back baking our delicious brownies again on Tuesday 3 January.

If you fancy celebrating the season with some Rise Brownies? If so, get your order in before 7pm on Tuesday 20 December to help make sure we can get them in the last Royal Mail Christmas post for you, (please note we cannot guarantee delivery dates)

Best wishes,

From the Rise Bakery team x

Around Rise Bakery - The joys of delivering cakes in East London!

We do feel lucky sometimes! We're based just off Brick Lane, in East London. We think it's one of the most exciting and vibrant places in the world. 

We thought we'd share some snaps taken while delivering our delicious cakes to local cafes last week. 

If you'd like to see more of our range, and order a delivery of brownies posted to your door, head to www.risebakery.london

We are surrounded by lots of beautiful fabric shops

We are surrounded by lots of beautiful fabric shops

Crisis is a brilliant homelessness charity with a cafe which we supply some cakes too, definitely try them out!

Crisis is a brilliant homelessness charity with a cafe which we supply some cakes too, definitely try them out!

When it rains, Spitalfields market is just a stones throw away, for all your undercover shopping needs!

When it rains, Spitalfields market is just a stones throw away, for all your undercover shopping needs!

You can find all sorts of lovely things in the many vintage shops down brick lane

You can find all sorts of lovely things in the many vintage shops down brick lane

Everyone round here has a cool ride...

Everyone round here has a cool ride...

There are plenty of delicious street food options!

There are plenty of delicious street food options!

LOTS of vintage shops...

LOTS of vintage shops...

And some other cool stuff like records :)

And some other cool stuff like records :)

Some brilliant galleries 

Some brilliant galleries 

A book shop or two...

A book shop or two...

One of the wonderful businesses we supply too, they also happen to be an extremely very cool independent cinema.

One of the wonderful businesses we supply too, they also happen to be an extremely very cool independent cinema.

We supply this lovely socent with cakes too!

We supply this lovely socent with cakes too!

Some of the  earliest social housing  in the world is nearby too! 

Some of the earliest social housing in the world is nearby too! 

Second Shot Coffee  is our new customer and we love them! They employ people affected by homelessness and work with our good friend - the homelessness charity  Crisis. 

Second Shot Coffee is our new customer and we love them! They employ people affected by homelessness and work with our good friend - the homelessness charity Crisis. 

10 Tips for a stress-free kitchen

Some of our staff at Rise bakery working hard in the kitchen

Some of our staff at Rise bakery working hard in the kitchen

Kitchens can be a busy, stressful place. No wonder all those chefs on TV are always shouting at each other!

At Rise, working with vulnerable adults, we think it's really important for our kitchen to be a safe, happy place. We thought that we'd share some of our wisdom with you!

If you want to learn more about our amazing training programmes for homeless people, or to buy our delicious brownies, head to our main page.

1.       Store any sticky or drippy food items such as honey and sauces on an easy to clean surface.

2.       Group kitchen objects by purpose, e.g. all baking equipment in one area.

3.       Create a cooking area around the oven, where all pots and utensils are in easy reach.

4.       Have a roll of sticky labels on hand so you can label and date opened containers of food and keep on top of what’s in your kitchen and when it should be used by!

5.       Store opened dry ingredients in strong waterproof containers that fit next to each other easily, ensuring maximum space.

6.       Organise knife sharpening in to your weekly/monthly schedule and avoid frustration and possible injury when you’re cooking in a rush and the knives are blunt.

7.       Create a recycling section near your general waste bin with draws specifically for different materials, this way recycling will become second nature!

8.       Buy some separate colour coded plastic boards for raw and cooked meats, fish and veg to ensure no risk of contamination or food poisoning.

9.       Wash out jars after the contents have been used and use again to store nuts, seeds and spices.

10.   When chopping vegetables, keep a small bowl on the surface for trimmings, to later be transferred to the bin (or compost).

Fudge and Jelly making in the Rise kitchen

As part of our work at rise we offer training classes to people who have experienced homelessness, it is great to see them grow in confidence and develop their skills in a positive environment.

Recently a group learned how to make fudge and jellies. Jason and William took part in this particular session and as usual our fantastic baker, Simon led the training. Jason was really interested in the science behind fudge and so this became part of the lesson. William is great at remembering each process and is on track to becoming an top baker in no time.

The guys measure out the ingredients 

The guys measure out the ingredients 

When chatting to the guys Jason explained that he misses playing the guitar. Luckily he has been supported in finding new guitar lessons and hopes to start them soon. As-well as the catering training and work with rise bakery Jason also takes IT classes at Providence Row (our parent charity) and he says that these have been really useful in helping him improve his CV and look for future work. Jason is really interested in nutrition and this fuels his interest in cooking however he says that William is a lot better than him in the pastry section because he has naturally cold hands!

Pouring the fudge in to moulds 

Pouring the fudge in to moulds 

On this occasion perhaps we were all chatting too much as the fudge did not go quite as planned. Luckily the jelly worked wonderfully and we have all learnt how to improve our method for next time.

Jason and William working hard

Jason and William working hard

Eva Wong's speed volunteering experience

Thank you Rise Bakery for giving me the opportunity to do something worthwhile with my spare time. It’s great to know I was able to just sign up and help with a particular project.

In my case I chose to assist with marketing your new brownie baking venture. I had the BEST time over the two days! It was great to be able to combine my passion for helping those less fortunate, chatting to like-minded people and of course all the while enjoy the heavenly scent of baked goods.

Brings a smile to my face and others to know there are ways we can help each other, especially when some of us are in a time of need. Keep up the amazing work and I’ll definitely be back to volunteer again soon!

If you're interested in spending an hour or more of your time as a speed volunteer for Rise Bakery or Providence Row, you can get involved via Team London here.