Sodexo is helping numerous small companies and not-for-profit organisations to upskill their workforce by gifting more than £1 million of its apprenticeship levy to support 106 new apprentices.
The money is helping train people for roles across many sectors including trainee paramedics for the London Ambulance Service and health and support staff for locally based community organisations and sports clubs in areas such as Salford, Worcester and Bath.
The levy is also funding a staff member at a primary school in Salford – where one of Sodexo’s main offices is based – enabling them to gain a Level 5 apprenticeship qualification.
In addition, Sodexo is gifting its levy to help numerous hospitality workers in the hotel and catering industry as firms across the UK are facing recruitment issues due to the pandemic.
Large businesses, such as Sodexo, can gift up to 25 per cent of their apprenticeship levy to help other organisations.
In February this year, during National Apprenticeship Week it committed to donate £800,000 a year to benefit SME organisations and not for profits.
Having increased the amount given to other organisations to meet this commitment, Sodexo has now gifted a total of £1,000,629 since 2019.
Sean Haley, Sodexo’s Regional Chair for UK & Ireland, said: “As an organisation that serves the public in so many important ways, it is incumbent on us to operate with purpose and to create a positive social impact in the communities we serve.
“Our apprenticeship programme is incredibly important to us and we have committed to ensuring that all appropriate job roles and vacancies are considered as an apprenticeship. Being able to share this to such an extent with SMEs and not-for-profit organisations is truly a privilege and we wish each apprentice benefitting from this every success.”
Sue Davison, Head of Apprenticeships at Sodexo, added: “As one of the largest facilities management organisations in the country, we build up a huge apprenticeship fund each year and, while we are committed to the apprenticeship scheme and encourage all of our colleagues in Sodexo to further their development and boost their careers, we also feel it is important to gift a percentage to help local communities, SMEs, the public sector and community based organisations.”
Sodexo ensures it is ‘gifting with purpose’ to employers that share the company’s ethos when it comes to health and safety and ensuring their workforce is diverse and inclusive.
Earlier this year, Sodexo launched its Social Impact Pledge, which included a commitment to contribute to the economic, social and environmental development of the cities, regions and countries in which it works.