Food projects on the Fylde coast have helped a business give social help worth millions, it revealed in a new report.
Recycling Lives handles a wide range of recycling via its commercial waste management schemes including making use of supermarket food to help charities such as Blackpool not-for-profit community café His Provision.
It also works with Blackpool Food Bank, Blackpool Food Partnership, Helping Hand and The Well Community Cafe in Blackpool, as well as Fleetwood Food Bank and Fleetwood YMCA.
Recycling Lives has published its Social Value Report, to show the social impact of its work which it said created a £4.1m saving to society.
It has created the multi-million pound saving by managing a food redistribution centre, which supports charities to feed disadvantaged groups, and an offender training and employment programme.
Its Food Distribution Centre served 531,000 meals in its first year, 2015/16, delivering 10,000 meals a week via its network of 85 members.
The Preston-based company also creates environmental jobs and training as well as running HMP Academies, which offer opportunities for men and women in prison to ‘earn and learn’, in order to significantly reduce their risk of re-offending.
Managing director Will Fletcher said: “We are committed to creating real social impact and value to society through our commercial and charitable activities; to be more than just a business.
“This Social Value Report doesn’t just focus on ‘what’ we do, but ‘why’ we do it – to change lives for the better.
“We hope our work will inspire others to look at how they can use their business to benefit communities by working in partnership with us.
“Recycling Lives is an example of a purpose investor – investing in individuals and communities to create social value alongside financial value and return.”
His Provision co-ordinator Christine Phillips said: “We couldn’t do all that we do without the Food Redistribution Centre.
“It means we can give nourishing meals with fresh ingredients. We’re able to teach people how to cook fresh meals.”