June Ross MBE (Founder & CEO)
June, a qualified Therapist and Welfare Officer, co-ordinates and manages Esther Community Enterprise. She is certified in the area of Health and Hygiene. Her empathy and commitment to our beneficiaries derives from her employment history in social services of 17 years, working in the areas of Mental Health, Children & Families and the Elderly. She demonstrates the necessary creative flair and business acumen to sustain and manage the enterprise. June has extensive experience in people participation, networking and social cohesion. On the 10th June 2016 - The Queens 90th Birthday Honour List, June was awarded an MBE for being Founder & CEO and providing a service to the disadvantaged.
Established in 2005, Esther Community Enterprise is a highly worthwhile third sector organisation, run on an entirely voluntary basis, serving the homeless and other socially excluded people in London and the UK. "Giving Purpose to Surplus" is our mission statement.We aim to meet those who have needs in the local community by redistribution of food and other consumables donated from retailers. ECE makes a worthwhile collective response to the 3 tenets of sustainable development, namely social, economical and environmental needs. there are few projects that succeed in this holistic quest.
Inspired by the biblical story of the daily collection of food (manna), June Ross approached food retailers who were throwing away good food that could be eaten, into landfill sites. Having experienced those in need in her employment within social services, June believed a difference could be made, by redirecting food to those who would benefit from it. " For many of our beneficiaries, choosing to pay a bill or putting food on the table is a constant worry. Accepting food in this way can be a very humbling experience". ECE feeds in excess of 25,000 people per month, and this is steadily on the increase as we expand across the UK.
ECE forms a consortium with other charities, faith groups, projects and organisations. We have over 70 Project Co-ordinators. They manage and help to distribute the food/groceries and clothing items within the local communities across the UK, on behalf of ECE. We have sustained our social enterprise through the goodwill and hard work of over 400 drivers and countless volunteers, who contribute their time, transportation and finance to this worthy cause. Near sell by date food is collected on a daily basis from a range of supermarkets and other retailers and diverted to those that need it most. Click here to view our distribution outlets
ECE has been involved in setting up a pilot scheme at a Breakfast and After school Club in a local primary school. The scheme involves providing breakfast items like fruit, yoghurt, bread, cereal and making smoothies to encourage the children to eat more healthily. This has proven to be very successfully amongst our participants, as there has been a significant rise in their attendance, intake of fruit and also the knowledge of why it is important to eat the right foods and care for the environment. We are now implementing this scheme in other schools.
Achievements to date
ln August 2007, ECE recieved a Certificate of Appreciation on behalf of 300,000 members of the IYF (International Youth Fellowship) for our contribution to the UK branch. In September 2008, Esther Community Enterprise was awarded certificates from the Lord Mayor of Croydon, for having carried out 100 hours of volunteering activities. On the 2 June 2011, ECE was awarded with the Queens Award for Voluntary Service, MBE. This is the highest award given to voluntary groups in the United Kingdom, and as such, is equivalent in status to the MBE. This prestigious UK National Honour recognises outstanding voluntary contributions and sets the national benchmark for excellence in volunteering, with the work of those awarded being judged to be of the highest standard.
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