Recycle Fife is a Social Enterprise, which was formed in 2003 in opposition to proposed plans for a landfill site. Frankie Hodge and Jackie Dunsmuir joined an action group to look at alternatives to Scottish Coals proposals for the landfill site.
Born from this was Recycle Fife, which sees Jackie and Frankie at the helm. 8 years on they have 21 members of staff, 3 regular volunteers and various work placement contracts. Recycle Fife are situated in Cartmore Industrial Estate in Lochgelly, and now have the capacity to recycle everything from old milk bottles to wooden pallets and microwaves!
They currently provide services to a variety of companies throughout the Kingdom including NHS Fife, SM Baynes, The Purvis Group, schools and other local businesses.
Frankie values volunteering and knows only too well the benefits it can bring.
“I see volunteers as a real asset to any organisation, and through volunteering they can show me how committed they are to this company. I had the chance to take on a paid member of staff recently, and had the choice between a client on a work placement scheme and a volunteer. The volunteer had shown a real enthusiasm for us, and had given above and beyond the commitment we were expecting, so it was an easy choice.”
The volunteer Frankie speaks of is Adam Lawlor. Adam came to Volunteer Centre after being referred by the Job Centre Plus in Cowdenbeath. Here Adam tells his story:
“I was applying for roughly 10 jobs per week, and getting nowhere, not even an interview. I had tried all sorts to get work, even dropping my CV in to companies in person in an attempt to get my face known but nothing was working. I asked at the Job Centre about volunteering and they gave me a card with someone to contact. I met Stephen in Lochgelly and we spoke about the options available. I enjoy manual and practical work so Recycle Fife instantly caught my eye.”
Recycle Fife at this stage, were quite new on the Volunteer Centre radar, however after liaising with Jackie over recruiting Adam, they were keen to give him a chance.
“Jackie called me a few days after meeting Stephen, and invited me in to show me around and what type of work I’d be doing. She asked which days I could do and I told her I’d be happy to do 5 days. I think they were shocked at first, but I wanted to show my commitment to helping them out. I was actively job-seeking and figured I was giving myself the best chance of a job if it came up by being there 5 days.”
10 weeks after starting as a volunteer Adam was offered the chance to become a paid member of staff, which he happily accepted, and now is an integral part of the team. Adam strongly believes that volunteering gives people a better chance of employment:
“Volunteering isn’t the easy route into work as there are no guarantees. However I believe I had the chance to ‘advertise’ myself whilst volunteering. I used it to show how committed and reliable I am, and luckily enough for me Recycle Fife recognised that and offered me the job. Sometimes job interviews give a false impression of a person so I much preferred to demonstrate my abilities by volunteering.”
Adam is just one example of someone who volunteered and made real progression in their life. Frankie and Jackie at Recycle Fife can offer opportunities to volunteer doing waste management, recycling and forklift driving. They are also looking to expand their presence in social media so would consider applicants interested in this.
To find out more call Recycle Fife on 01592 781984.