More than 100 Kenyans fill hospitality jobs in Channel Islands

  • 108 people from Kenya have moved to the Channel Islands to work in hospitality.
  • GR8 recruitment said they came up with the idea so they could “provide the industry with the staff they need” as the islands faced staff shortages.
  • One woman who moved to Guernsey to work in a hotel housekeeping team has said her “life has changed”.
  • A further 37 Kenyan people have been offered jobs and are going through the visa process to move to the islands.

More than a hundred people from Kenya have come to the Channel Islands to work over the last 10 months, according to a recruitment firm.

 They are filling staffing gaps during a challenging time for the hospitality industry, the recruitment company GR8 says.

Lee Madden, founder of GR8 said a lack of interest in hospitality jobs in the Channel Islands had prompted the overseas recruitment drive.

The company worked with Bukura Agricultural College in Nairobi, Kenya, to hire chefs, kitchen porters, housekeeping staff, front of house staff, bar staff and waiters.

Grace Ashenga, from Nairobi, has been working at the Duke of Normandie Hotel in Guernsey.

She said: “My life has changed, I’m not where I was before and I’ve made big progress and I’m proud of myself.

“My mum is really proud of me because of the changes I’ve been making.”

Ms Ashenga worked with the Duke of Normandie’s housekeeping team from April for nine months before going back to Kenya and is expected to return to work in Guernsey in the Easter period.

Mr Madden told BBC Radio Guernsey: “Across the islands and the UK we’ve not got enough interest, talent or people who want to work in the industry for many reasons, including Brexit.

“We needed to find a solution to the recruitment problem.

 “We thought the best route would be to recruit globally to provide qualified, professional and dedicated hospitality staff to provide our industry with the staff they need.”

His recruitment company has found work placements for 108 Kenyans in the Channel Islands.

He said a further 37 have been offered jobs and are going through the visa process before coming to the islands to start their new roles.

-BBC

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