The programme, which was created with close support from HABC, is comprised of seven HABC qualifications Representatives from Highfield Awarding Body for Compliance (HABC) joined staff and dignitaries as Serco-run HMP Kilmarnock welcomed Group CEO Rupert Soames to the prison to congratulate trainees on being the first nationally to complete a new training programme. The visit took place just before Christmas (9 December 2014) and saw the Serco chief spend a full day at the establishment – which is operated by the organisation on behalf of the Scottish Prison Service - as he met with staff and toured its facilities. Rupert’s full schedule for the day included attending the Daily Operational Meeting with the Senior Management Team and presiding over the Prisoner Custody Officer (PCO) Graduation Ceremony, where 10 trainees received certificates – and permits to care for prisoners – after completion of their eight-week intensive-training programme. The programme, which was created with close support from HABC, is comprised of seven HABC qualifications including its brand new Level 3 Diploma in Knowledge of Custodial Care. It is delivered over a period of 7 weeks with an additional week of shadowing their new work area, ensuring trainees are ready for their roles. It is now being rolled out nationally at all of Serco’s custodial sites after being piloted at HMP Kilmarnock. Graduates, their families and members of the SMT were amongst guests at the ceremony, which also included HABC Business Development Manager Andrew Hibbitt and HABC Commercial Operations Director John Morley. Andrew Hibbitt, HABC Business Development Manager, said, ‘We have worked closely with Serco to create this programme and it was a great honour to be invited to see the very first graduates receive their certificates from Serco CEO Rupert Soames in front of their colleagues and families. The qualifications that make up this programme were all developed by HABC and cover a range of subjects vital to anyone in a PCO role - from fire safety and conflict management to substance misuse and manual handling – as well as our brand new Level 3 Diploma in Knowledge of Custodial Care’.