Caterer for West Sussex schools donates food to charities

Surplus food originally intended for West Sussex schoolchildren has been donated to charities during the coronavirus emergency.

Tuesday, 19th May 2020, 5:13 pm
Chartwells has been donating food to West Sussex charities

The majority of schools across the UK closed in late March as the country went into lockdown.

Since then West Sussex County Council (WSCC) and its catering partner for schools, Chartwells, have been working closely to ensure any surplus food is donated to local charities.

Since the much-reduced numbers of children attending schools throughout the UK in late March, the organisations have donated a range of products including sandwiches, cases of apples, plus cheese, bread, treats and crisps. The supplies included Steamplicity products – a meal solution that uses a micro-steaming system to cook a range of raw and pre-cooked ingredients to be ready to eat within minutes.

John Figgins, head of catering services at WSCC, said: “The recent Covid-19 situation meant that we had an opportunity with Chartwells to support some fantastic local charities by quickly organising the donation of food from our school meal service, that we may otherwise have risked wasting.”

Those that have benefited include homelessness charity Stonepillow as well as Littlehampton Community Fridge, which rescues surplus food and makes it available to those who need it.

FareShare, the UK’s largest charity fighting hunger and food waste has also received items to share with local communities.

Hilary Bartle, CEO at Stonepillow, said: “We are really grateful for these donations and it has helped us ensure we’re able to support the most vulnerable homeless people in Chichester during this really tough time.”

Charlie Brown, managing director at Chartwells, added: “Thank you to everyone who came together to make this donation happen. We are pleased to be working closely with the West Sussex County Council to support those in need.”

Chartwells provides services to around 200 schools. During the coronavirus crisis the teams have continued to support key worker children and have also been providing nutritious packed lunches or home hampers for those entitled to free school meals.

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