Hundreds of hours of volunteering from Sodexo for SSAFA

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08 July 2024

Sodexo employees, through the Stop Hunger Foundation, continue to support the armed forces community through volunteering activities to help SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity, provide valuable aid to service personnel, veterans, and their families.

In June, Sodexo’s Stop Hunger Foundation arranged volunteering opportunities with long-standing charity partner, SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity at several locations across the UK and Cyprus for Sodexo’s employees and for volunteers from its supply partners and client organisations.

During National Volunteers Week, around 92 volunteers put in 525 hours’ support through a volunteering drive organised by SSAFA and Sodexo Stop Hunger. The volunteers helped with gardening, well-being workshops, painting, and handing out leaflets. Around 780 people benefitted from the help of the volunteers in the one week alone.

Terrie, housing manager from SSAFA’s Stepping Stone Home said: “The work of the volunteers is nothing short of incredible. Painting the fences has helped us provide a safe and welcoming environment for our beneficiaries who desperately need it.”

In addition to this special volunteering drive, around 70 Sodexo employees took part in SSAFA’s 13 Bridges Challenge, an annual fundraising event held in London taking in the city’s iconic bridges each Armed Forces Day. Some participants walked its 10-mile route virtually, however all were raising valuable funds for SSAFA.

Gareth John, European Director of Sodexo Legal Affairs and Chair of the Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation said: “Sadly, veterans are more likely to face food insecurity.  This is why Stop Hunger has been a partner to SSAFA since 2008, supporting the provision of urgent welfare – financial, practical and emotional – to those most in need from the Armed Forces community, in particular veterans and their families through SSAFA’s Stop Hunger Homelessness Fund.”

Volunteering plays an important role in Sodexo’s partnership with SSAFA, and the company said it was “… an honour to provide opportunities for our colleagues, clients and suppliers for our annual volunteering drive.”

Last year marked a milestone in the partnership with the total funding donated from Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation to SSAFA reaching £500,000. The annual donation from the Stop Hunger Foundation supports SSAFA’s Homelessness Fund, providing funding for the urgent welfare provision to those most in need from the armed forces community, particularly veterans and their families across all three services. Grants from the fund are also a vital resource for volunteer caseworkers to find a swift resolution to urgent cases.

Lieutenant Sir Andrew Gregory, CEO of SSAFA, said: “SSAFA is delighted to maintain its long-standing relationship with Sodexo and the Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation, a relationship that makes a real and practical difference to those in our Armed Forces community who need support. And that holistic help that provides financial assistance to SSAFA’s Homelessness Fund, is as vital today as it has ever been.”

Sodexo’s volunteering programme is part of its commitment to fighting food insecurity both in the UK and Ireland as well as across the globe. Every year Sodexo, through the Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation, enables its employees to three paid days to participate in volunteering activity with charities such as SSAFA. This provides them with the chance to deliver social impact to their local communities as well as providing opportunities for team-building, improved wellbeing, as well as the development of personal and professional skills.

Working with national and local charity partners Sodexo Stop Hunger unites and mobilises changemakers engaging its employees in a wide range of volunteering opportunities. The Foundation’s work goes beyond immediate food aid activities, it is focused on changing lives by addressing the root causes of food insecurity with a focus on women empowerment.

Sodexo is the founding partner of the Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation. In the UK & Ireland, the Foundation’s (a UK registered charity) mission is to act sustainably to fight food insecurity and complement Sodexo's Social Impact pledge.

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