Social & Community
The majority of our 159 employees live in the community where the factory is based, and therefore we have a responsibility to the community, both externally and internally.
We have a policy of recruiting, training and developing local people, which should instil in them a sense of community in their workplace and with their colleagues.
We therefore endeavour to sponsor and support local schools, and charities. We have a Company sports and social club, through which we try to hold events within the local community.
As one of the largest local employers we endeavour to promote lifestyle changes, with various schemes that we have to offer e.g., “Cycle to Work Scheme”.
In addition to this, we have always taken very seriously its position as the largest private employer in our Borough and as such founded our own Stephens & George Centenary Charitable Trust in 2012. The Trust aims to improve literacy within our community.
First alerted to the astonishing low levels of literacy within the area when the apprenticeship and employment applications were of such a low standard as to make applicants unsuitable for work, we decided that something had to be done. Forming the Trust has shown a deep commitment to developing the local community and the opportunities available to people within it. We recognise that, in order to succeed, a strong, motivated and successful community is essential and that investment in people is the only way to achieve this mutually beneficial working relationship.
By providing people outside the organisation with the opportunity to better their education and opportunities we are, in effect, generating a future generation of people who are able and willing to work towards their own successful careers and can at last have aspirations. Our Trust has worked in partnership with Arts Council for Wales, Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama and Wales Millennium Centre to deliver a literacy festival for World Book Day in our town for the last eight years. We also provide bursaries; for education (means tested).
The Trust works closely with the community to help deliver projects in Primary schools and other establishments and as part of this recognition has been gifted a local Community Centre which will continue to be run on a “not for profit” basis by the Trust. These projects include reading support volunteers and the building of libraries within local schools, and has inspired the Welsh Assembly Government to follow our lead providing, a chess in school programme.
During Covid restrictions we diversified and organised food parcels via volunteers to be delivered to vulnerable people in the community. As a result, the Trust has recently been awarded the Queens Award for Voluntary Services.
We continue to work with children from the community providing remote learning support and innovative classes online. We provided an online book festival when children were allowed back into schools, with authors, artists and poets transmitting simultaneously to several thousand children in school locations. Hence, we have won The Education and Training Category Award for the best in the UK at the 2021 Charity Awards.
We continue to build relationships in the Trust with various government agencies; Probation Services, Voluntary Action, Welsh Assembly Government, and as a result of these partnerships and our volunteer programme, we have given numerous young people career opportunities within our business over the last 9 years and taken on several mature trainees in the production, estimating and warehouse areas.