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Inmates Showcase Culinary Talent At First-Ever Yellow Ribbon Cooking Competition


CARE Network collaborates with Raffles Hotel to hone inmates’ culinary talent

Singapore, May 9, 2007 – Twelve inmates pit their culinary skills against one another in the Yellow Ribbon Cooking Competition held in Changi Prison Cluster A today. This milestone activity is the first in a series of Yellow Ribbon Project activities in 2007, organised by the Community Action for the Rehabilitation of Ex-Offenders (CARE) Network. The cooking competition was jointly organised by Raffles Hotel. Chef de Cuisine Jean-Charles Dubois from the hotel’s French fine-dining restaurant Raffles Grill was one of the judges at today’s finals and was also heavily involved in preparing the inmates for the competition.

This cooking competition simulates the kitchen environment and challenges faced by professional chefs. Participants were required to produce an original Western-style dish within a strict three-hour limit using predetermined ingredients and equipment.

“The participants showed promise and a genuine eagerness to learn, and this experience has been rewarding as I have been able to see the improvements they have been able to make,” said Chef Dubois.

To prepare participants for the competition, Chef Dubois visited the institutions five times and provided video instruction to introduce the ingredients and cooking methods to the inmates. In addition to equipping themselves with culinary pointers from Chef Dubois, inmates also gained food preparation experience in a food hub managed by the Singapore Corporation of Rehabilitative Enterprises (SCORE). Highlighting the importance of the Yellow Ribbon Project in helping ex-offenders reintegrate and contribute to society, Chef Dubois added, “The participants displayed a high level of creativity and talent. It was a pleasure working with them, imparting my skills and food philosophy which I hope would serve them well in the future.”

The Yellow Ribbon Project is a nation-wide campaign to raise the awareness of Singaporeans about the need of inmates, ex-offenders and their families for societal acceptance. There are approximately 11,000 ex-offenders who are released from the various prisons and drug rehabilitation centres each year. As most ex-offenders have to return to their families and the community, the focus on rehabilitation and aftercare efforts alone are not adequate. The Yellow Ribbon Project highlights the important part the community plays in the creation of an inclusive social environment where ex-offenders, who display strong desire to change, and their families can find the hope to start life afresh and become contributing members of society.

“The participation of inmates in this competition further reaffirms their determination to contribute to their families and society. We’re proud to have our inmates’ creation featured at the prestigious Raffles Hotel. Chef Dubois’ contribution to our inmates also shows that the community is willing to take the lead in helping inmates in their rehabilitation and reintegration,” said Mr. Desmond Chin, Chairman, Yellow Ribbon Project Organising Committee.

Winning recipes will also be recreated at a special reunion lunch, A Tribute of Love, to be held in three days’ time for winners and their family members. Raffles Hotel will also feature the best dish on a Raffles menu, making it available to her patrons and guests.

Media Contact

For more information, please contact:

Aaron Yeo
Burson-Marsteller for Singapore Prison Service
Telephone: 6829 9333
Mobile: 9843 3505

Eric Lim
Burson-Marsteller for Singapore Prison Service
Telephone: 6829 9325
Mobile: 9366 1006

Serena Lim
Public Affairs Branch, Singapore Prison Service
Telephone: 6546 9384 Email:

About Yellow Ribbon Creative Festival 

The Yellow Ribbon Creative Festival is an internal festival to celebrate inmates’ talent. The festival comprises four competitions – cooking, poetry-writing and story-telling, song-writing and art – and is held from May to September 2007.

Organised by the CARE Network and supported by various community and corporate partners, the festival showcases a range of inmates’ creative work, based on themes that revolve around their reflection, transformation and reintegration into society.

About the CARE Network

The Community Action for the Rehabilitation of Ex-Offenders (CARE) Network’s vision is to offer hope, confidence and opportunities for ex-offenders. CARE Network seeks to engage the community in rehabilitation, coordinate member agencies’ activities and develop innovative rehabilitation initiatives for ex-offenders.

The CARE Network brings together various community and government organisations responsible for the rehabilitation of reforming offenders. They are the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), Ministry of Community Development, Youth & Sports (MCYS), Singapore Prison Service (Prisons), Singapore Corporation of Rehabilitative Enterprises (SCORE), National Council of Social Service (NCSS), Industrial and Services Co-operative Society Limited (ISCOS), Singapore After-Care Association (SACA) and Singapore Anti-Narcotics Association (SANA).

For more information on CARE Network, please visit


Raffles Hotel features 103 elegantly appointed suites, 18 distinctive restaurants and bars, the world-class RafflesAmrita Spa, Raffles Hotel Arcade housing the best in regional specialities and international brand names, including THOS SB Raffles – an incubator shop offering lifestyle concepts and products as well as a purveyor of fine food and wines, the Raffles Hotel Museum, the Jubilee Hall theatre playhouse, the Raffles Culinary Academy and extensive lush gardens and courtyards.


Raffles is a collection of luxury hotels around the globe that distinguishes itself through the highest standards of products and services. Each hotel is a landmark in its respective city, positioned at the top of its local market and rated among the very best in the world.

Raffles’ relentless pursuit of service excellence has earned for its hotels and resorts a legion of international accolades, including Condé Nast World’s Best Places to Stay and Travel & Leisure World’s Best Awards. Its flagship, Raffles Hotel Singapore, was named Best Luxury Hotel 2006 by Travel Trade Gazette Asia. Raffles Hotels & Resorts was ranked second among the world’s top hotel brands in the 2006 Condé Nast Traveler Business Travel Awards.

The award-winning collection of legendary hotels includes Raffles Hotel and Raffles The Plaza in Singapore, Raffles Grand Hotel d’Angkor, Siem Reap, Cambodia, Raffles Hotel Le Royal, Phnom Penh, Cambodia, Raffles Beijing Hotel, People’s Republic of China, Raffles L’Ermitage Beverly Hills in the U.S., Raffles Resort Canouan Island, The Grenadines, and Raffles Le Montreux Palace, Montreux, Switzerland. Raffles Dubai, United Arab Emirates, will open in the third quarter of 2007.

Future additions to the Raffles portfolio include a hotel on the Cotai Strip in Macao, Raffles Tianjin in China, Raffles Da Nang in Vietnam, Raffles Konottaa in the Maldives, and Raffles Phang Nga Resort and Residences in Phuket, Thailand, comprising a 120-villa resort and 25 private Raffles Residences adjacent to the resort.

Last Updated/Reviewed on 05-February-2018