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Publication date: Tuesday, 15 March 2016
Four inmates from the Long Bay Correctional Complex are one step closer to getting their commercial boating licence. The group received their Certificate I in Maritime Operations in Sydney recently.
The course offered by TAFE NSW's Open Training and Education Network (OTEN) has equipped the inmates with skills to work effectively as a part of crew and maintain a vessel. The group has also learnt health and safety requirements to work on boats.
The inmates completed the course while participating in the innovative Redfern Clean Slate program. The program, run by Aboriginal organisation Tribal Warrior and Redfern Police Commander Luke Freudenstein, is helping Aboriginal inmates and local young people stay on the right side of the law. Since its inception, Clean Slate has helped reduce crime in Redfern dramatically.
Mr Freudenstein attended today's ceremony with Long Bay's General Manager Pat Aboud, Tribal Warrior's Shane Phillips, two Corrective Services NSW officers and representatives from TAFE NSW.
Head of Maritime Training at TAFE NSW, Chris Heeks, presented certificates and copies of the Australian Boating Manual to the inmates. He inscribed in each book the words 'The greatest journey begins with the first step'.
"This manual is your bible. You're on a great path now. Just keep going and never go back," he said.
Mr Aboud said the inmates have been gaining real job skills and qualifications by participating in Clean Slate. "They've learnt how to work in a team and have gained structure and resilience to their lives," Mr Aboud said.
The inmates have now set their sights on working in the commercial boating industry.