A Serco waste crew in the London Borough of Bexley have been recognised by the company with a global award after they compassionately stepped in to support a vulnerable elderly resident who had been the victim of theft.
The crew were carrying out their normal waste collection round in Nuxley Village, Bexley, and suspected something was not right when they saw that there was, unusually, no refuse to collect from the home of an elderly woman.
The crew knocked on the woman’s door to find her in a distressed state. Her purse had been stolen and she had no money for food, heating or electricity.
Upon hearing of the resident’s situation, the crew decided to club together and gave her £20 of their own money so she could heat and power her home, as well as doing an emergency grocery shop for her.
When they returned to the depot, they explained the situation to their manager and arranged for the woman to be given £50 of shopping vouchers, to help her buy any more groceries she needed until her next pension pay date.
The team now visit the resident every Thursday when they are carrying out their round and always call in to check she is ok.
Mick Gatton, Serco Contract Manager, London Borough of Bexley, said: “The way the crew went out of the way to help this vulnerable resident is really admirable. When they found out about the difficulties she was facing they didn’t hesitate to offer their support, giving up their time and even digging into their own pockets. They bring the same caring and compassionate approach to their work in the local community every day, so I am really pleased to see them recognised with this award.”
Cllr Peter Craske, Cabinet Member for Community Safety, Environment and Leisure, said: “Serco collect over 1,500 tonnes of waste and recycling in our borough each week and cover over 1,150 miles of Bexley roads, but the Nuxley Village waste crew have really have gone the extra mile!
“This random act of kindness is truly inspirational, and it’s great to see our contractors looking out for members of the community. Congratulations to the crew for this well-deserved award and recognition.”
The crew were presented with their awards by Serco Group Chief Executive Rupert Soames at an event marking the company’s UK winners of its Global Pulse Awards. The awards celebrate employees from among Serco’s 50,000 strong team around the world who have done extraordinary things for their colleagues, customers or communities.
Serco has provided waste and recycling collection and street cleaning services on behalf of the London Borough of Bexley since 2009.
Photo: Crew members Jason Baker and Kris Wilson