BAME in Hospitality launches mentorship scheme

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

BAME in Hospitality not-for-profit organisation launches mentorship scheme

Related tags: Black Lives Matter, James Cochran, Chef, Restaurant

Not-for-profit organisation BAME in Hospitality has announced the creation of a new mentorship scheme to support Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic employees within the sector.

The Elevate Mentorship Scheme programme, which is due to commence in the autumn, will include mentors such as chefs James Cochran and Nokx Majozi; author, recipe writer and food stylist Rukmini Iyer; and food critic Jimi Famurewa.

The organisation adds that it is calling upon mentors from diverse backgrounds and mentees from Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic backgrounds to get in touch.

BAME in Hospitality’s mission is to 'advance learning throughout the sector; beginning with a focus on its members and providing them with mentoring, coaching, and sponsored learning initiatives'.

This will be accompanied by partnering with organisations and businesses and granting access to tools and resources to assist driving change.

The group was founded last year by Lorraine Copes, a senior procurement leader who has worked for brands such as Shake Shack, Gordon Ramsay and currently Corbin & King.

Copes has spent the past eight months building a community across all occupations within the sector.

“I felt compelled to take action as throughout my 18 years within the sector I have always been the only person of colour around any decision-making table, and there is a very visible barrier for career progression for people of Black, Asian and other Minorities within the hospitality sector, which needs to be confronted and addressed,” she says.

The UK's Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic population is 14%, but representation within the hospitality sector has remained ahead of this for many years.

In 2011/2012 it was 16.78%; and more recently in 2018/2019 it was 17.83%.

Despite these numbers, BAME in Hospitality notes that there is a glaringly lack of diversity in positions of influence including head chef, managerial and leadership positions.

It adds that it is currently conducting a series of polls, which will provide unique insights to unpack the current challenges faced.

Related topics: People, Restaurant, Chef

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