On Friday, 18 November 2022, the Minister of Justice, Dr Dominika Švarc Pipan, together with the State Secretary, Dr Igor Šoltes, and her team visited the Ig Prison near the Slovenian capital, Ljubljana for the award ceremony of FoodE pilot project “Prison Honey”.
FoodE pilot project Prison Honey, which is a part of Horizons 2020 EU consortium, has been running in cooperation with the Prison Administration of the Republic of Slovenia in the Open ward of the men’s prison Ig since 2020. The project aims to raise awareness about the importance of bees and other pollinators for the environment and at the same time to empower incarcerated persons through practical beekeeping training course.
Visit from the ministry
In the open ward of the men’s prison, the head of the ward, Hermina Androjna, together with Gorazd Trušnovec and Franc Petrovčič from the Urban Beekeepers’ Association of Slovenia, presented the FoodE pilot project “Prison Honey” to the Minister and her team. There, Trušnovec and Petrovčič pointed out that “the project is unique in the European area and that the experience of participating in the project has been very positive for the Association as well. It has been a learning process for all of them.” The uniqueness of the project has also gained the attention of a well-known Slovenian media outlet.
During the presentation, the co-mentors expressed their satisfaction “that it is nice to work with people who show an interest in beekeeping and are visibly progressing from week to week.” In two years, 25 convicts have been actively involved in the Prison Honey project, and some of them are already working independently as beekeepers after their release.
At the end of the meeting, the Minister, Dr Dominika Švarc Pipan, presented the convicted prisoner, who had actively participated in the project, a diploma for completed beekeeping training. As a token of appreciation, the Minister received, a jar of honey extracted from the hives in the Ig prison in return.