What is Sweet Justice?
Sweet Justice is a training and work experience program for young people qualifying to become beekeepers. Sweet Justice currently runs 2 days per week as a youth program at Malmsbury Youth Justice Centre in Victoria.
The program has been very successful with all classes completely subscribed, and incredibly positive experiences reported by both the young people and Centre staff.
Sweet Justice is based on an American social enterprise called the Sweet Beginnings Project that uses beekeeping training to engage youth in justice centres. Young people in detention are trained as beekeepers, and during the program they help to maintain and harvest hives, learning valuable skills they can take into the workforce.
Sweet Beginnings graduates in the United States have a criminal reoffending rate of just 4% compared with an average of 65% for other juvenile offenders in their cohort.
Whilst the program has proven incredibly successful in youth justice, we believe it has enormous potential outside of that setting.
We want to offer our program to young people all over Australia. We want to work with young people from tough backgrounds, culturally and linguistically diverse young people, in short any young person who finds mainstream education is not a great fit for them, and who wants to learn practical workplace skills.