LONDON (January 31, 2017) – As part of a US$60 million programme launched by the Enterprise Rent-A-Car Foundation to combat hunger in Europe and North America, food redistribution charity FareShare has received the first of six £500,000 annual grants to help people in the UK.
The donation is part of a wider initiative by the Enterprise Rent-A-Car Foundation called Fill Your Tank, which has been designed to celebrate the company’s 60th anniversary this year. The company will provide US$60 million over the next six years to address food insecurity in the countries where it has wholly-owned business operations in Europe and North America. In Europe, the initiative is being carried out in collaboration with The Global FoodBanking Network (GFN), a non-profit that accelerates the development and growth of food banks in more than 30 countries around the world.
Through its worldwide partnership with GFN, Enterprise Rent-A-Car is investing a total of £3 million to address hunger in the UK through FareShare over the next six years. This grant will help to increase FareShare’s capacity to redistribute surplus food to people in need throughout the country.
According to UN data, an estimated 8.4 million people living in UK households reported having insufficient food in 2014. FareShare, a member of GFN, will use this first grant to build the capacity of its operations nationally across five UK regions so it can redistribute more surplus food to frontline charities and community groups.
Across Greater Manchester there are 650,000 people living in deep poverty and a quarter of them are children. The grant will enable FareShare to expand its services across this region to help feed vulnerable people living in some of the most deprived communities in the country.
Across Lancashire and Cumbria, the grant will be used to fund the addition of the new Food Distribution Manager, who has been directly supported out of homelessness. This will help increase the number of charities that will benefit from FareShare food in the region.
In both Thames Valley and Northern Ireland the grant will help expand FareShare warehouses and add essential equipment. This will enable more charities to benefit from FareShare’s food, and in doing so help them to save significant funds that can then be reinvested into vital frontline support services.
FareShare also plans to expand its services across Sussex to ensure that more people will directly benefit.
FareShare could not offer its services without the generous support of its volunteers, many of whom have directly experienced food poverty and come from the charities and community groups it works with. Funds will also be used to develop a UK-wide volunteer recruitment and retention programme and to help expand FareShare’s services to parts of the country it currently cannot reach.
Lindsay Boswell, Chief Executive of FareShare, said: “We are hugely grateful to the Enterprise Rent-A-Car Foundation for its leadership with its Fill Your Tank initiative, which will help FareShare and other like-minded organisations around the globe to tackle hunger. This grant will support our network to get more good, surplus food to charities and community groups across the UK, so they can provide vital and life-changing support to people in need.”
Khaled Shahbo, Enterprise Rent-A-Car Managing Director for the UK & Ireland, said: “It is an honour to be able to tackle hunger in such an impactful way through the generous support from the Enterprise Rent-A-Car Foundation as part of our 60th anniversary celebrations. Food insecurity affects all communities, and as a neighbourhood organisation with branches in more than 420 locations across the country, supporting the communities where we operate is a vital part of our culture. There is already a pre-existing link between Enterprise and FareShare that’s independent of this donation as we provide some of their refrigerated vehicles through our Flex-E-Rent business. We look forward to this new venture with FareShare to reduce food waste and combat the very real problem of hunger in the UK.”
Lisa Moon, President and CEO of The Global FoodBanking Network, said: “This extraordinary gift will make a tremendous difference in alleviating hunger in the UK and around the world in a meaningful way. The donation will help expand efforts to support social inclusion while reducing food waste and its harmful effects on our environment. It will help break barriers that keep people from achieving their full potential and leading healthy, productive lives.”