peoples kitchen largeStaff from leading national engineering specialist, SES Engineering Services (SES) put their backs into it recently when they went out into the community to support one of the region’s local charities.

As part of Wates Community Week, a company-wide initiative, which aims to lend a hand to community organisations and local charities, staff from SES offices across the UK selected a deserving organisation to work with, providing help in a variety of ways.

In the North East, staff from SES’ North East office chose The People’s Kitchen, a well-established charity that supports the city’s homeless by providing food and friendship.  Over a week-long period, SES employees dug out their spades and gardening tools and headed off to Tweed Street Allotment to help regular volunteers from The People’s Kitchen to dig over land at the allotment and prepare it for planting fruit and vegetables.

Since April 2015 the Tweed Street allotment, has produced a variety of crops including 65lb of rhubarb, 175lb of potatoes, 40lb of cabbage, 11lb of turnips and 62lb of strawberries.  Thanks to SES’ contribution the charity hopes to harvest even more produce later this year.

Following their time on the allotment, SES staff also assisted the regular volunteers to sort and organise food donations in the charity’s stores ready for use in their dedicated kitchen and nightly out-reach service.

Speaking about the initiative, SES’ regional director for the North East and Yorkshire, Steve Joyce said:  “It’s great to be able to give something back. As a company we are committed to helping deserving organisations which seek to help those in the communities in which we work. We are able to achieve this by giving staff time off to volunteer over a week long period and also donate either services or goods that we know will make a difference.”

Thanking Steve and the team from SES, Dr Peter Samuel, vice chair of the People’s Kitchen added:  “I would like to thank SES and in particular Steve Joyce and his team who chose to work with us during the company’s impressive Community Week initiative.  Without the support of local businesses and the generosity of the local community, organisations such as ours would not be here to help those who need it most.

“I hope the SES volunteers also take something away from the time they have given up and feel rewarded by their contribution.”

In addition to the 60 man-hours the SES volunteers gave, a grant of £500 was made by Wates Giving, which is the charitable programme of Wates Family Enterprise Trust. Wates Giving forms a vital part of the Wates Family’s approach to being responsible business owners. The programme’s priority is to empower initiatives that make a real difference to society.