Driving Social Change
Manchester’s largest independent waste business, Kenny Waste Management, has completed its initial target under a social enterprise initiative to provide long-term employment for local adults.
The recruitment of the company’s first degree-level apprentice under its new ‘Driving Change’ initiative meets its initial target of adding 20 people to the company payroll before the end of 2020.
Seventeen of the new employees are from backgrounds which traditionally make finding employment difficult – a situation that is not uncommon in the locality, as evidenced by reports from private equity foundation Impetus which have consistently cited the Manchester metropolitan area as having the highest NEET (not in employment, education or training) rate of any local authority in North West England.
According to Impetus, the vicinity’s disadvantaged young people are twice as likely to be out of education, employment and training as their better-off peers; with young people who are both low qualified and from disadvantaged backgrounds “doubly disadvantaged, and most likely to be locked out of the labour market when aged 18-24.”
Additionally, 39 per cent of young people (or 10,900 people) in the Greater Manchester Combined Area (GMCA) are currently classified as disadvantaged, with the City of Salford’s GMCA reported at 23 per cent (or 3,200 people).1
Under its new social initiative programme, Kenny Waste Management has hired seven apprentices from different educational backgrounds, including six who were categorised as “long-term unemployed”, and seven ex-offenders.
Neil Mackey, managing director, explains: “We have made a conscious decision to make a real difference to our local community. This includes investing our time, expertise and capital into an exciting and entirely new venture for the company that provides life-changing results for people in the region who can struggle to find employment.
“Last year, we created the Kenny Waste Management Social Enterprise initiative, Driving Change, and set ourselves a target of changing 20 lives by 2020. We are delighted that we have now reached this goal with the hire of Josh Brewer, our first ever Degree apprentice, in conjunction with the University of Chester.
“This ongoing scheme reflects the community values that we as a family firm hold dear, which includes a genuine responsibility towards our local community. We strongly believe in changing lives by giving people from all walks of life a chance to realise their potential in a supportive and encouraging environment. We care about their future, not their past, and want to give young and inexperienced people the opportunity they need to start on an established and stable career path.
“The initiative has not only helped the people we employ but has also benefitted our business and working environment. We’ve seen so many positive changes through this programme, including tapping into an incredible pool of talented, focused people.”