Community & People Response

Supporting the lives of our people and the broader community in which we operate has always been important to us. 

Over recent weeks we have all enjoyed being kinder to each other. We have clapped the HSE, and volunteering is at an all-time high.  

The world is changing, and we are already blazing a trail in our people and community initiatives.  We want to use our passion for food and service powered by the scale of our operation and underpinned by our safety culture to make a positive impact on the lives of people.

Community

Previously we would be busy fuelling workers in over 130 workplace restaurants across the country. But with the COVID-19 outbreak gradually closing most of our client’s offices, we had spare capacity and a team of people wanting to support the community.

We set ourselves a mission to feed our local community and give a new lease of life to our kitchens.  

Here’s just a few highlights of what we’ve gotten up to in the last few weeks!  

Emergency Response Kitchen
Compass Group Ireland has joined forces with our client at the National Treasury Management Agency to deliver freshly cooked meals direct to the doorstep of those in the community who need them the most. 

Together, we’ve reached out to a number of charities in the greater Dublin area that are supporting homelessness, persons with a disability or health issues and older persons including LauraLynn, Ireland’s Children’s Hospice, Ronald McDonald House Charities Ireland, Irish Wheelchair Association (IWA), Age Action Ireland, The Children’s Sunshine Home and the COVID-19 Dublin City Council Community Response Forum. 

Up to three hundred nutritious meals will be prepared and delivered twice a week, with the number of meals increased in line with demand. 

We would like to thank the team at NTMA …. this is what partnership is all about!

Emergency

“Our routine and nursing care have gone out the window with this virus and we are so appreciative of any support we can actually avail off. We were so delighted with our delivery from compass catering and glad to see such huge effort from others to support those caring for kids like ours during this difficult time. The kids were delighted with a break from our cooking too!” Les Martin.

The Martin family are cocooning in Wicklow Town, who’s two sons Ciarán (5) and Cathal (4) are terminally ill with Metachromatic Leukodystrophy (MLD).

“We’re really proud to be able to offer our skills, time and resources to help some families around Ireland at this really difficult time. I’m sure cooking is the last thing on people’s minds when caring for families and children, so it’s a privilege to be able to support them. A huge thanks to all our dedicated people who have made this possible.” Chris Chidley, Managing Director Compass Group Ireland.

Compass Easter Bunny
It’s inspiring to see the range of wonderful initiatives springing up throughout our business to help those most in need. Understandably, many businesses are temporarily moving operations to home in response to the crisis. This meant that one of our contract teams were left with a large surplus of Easter treats from their regular stock.

The self-styled ‘Compass Easter Bunnies’ took it upon themselves to deliver those Easter treats to the LauraLynn hospice and Capuchin centre for the homeless. Further drops for key workers at Kilkenny and Tallaght hospitals and the Park House nursing home in Kilcock have also been added to the list.

Lunch Bags
With many of our client sites operating with  just essential workers, some sites have opted to move from  a full restaurant service to Grab N’ Go bags to ensure we keep  their key workers fuelled. As participation varies each day, we wanted to ensure we kept food waste down while, also supporting those in need. We are proud to have donated Lunch Bags to Dublin Inner City Helping the Homeless, and also continue to make daily donations to ICU staff in Tallaght Hospital.

Meals on Wheels
For our team at Fingal County Council, they knew they were in a position to help more people during this challenging time. By partnering with the council, the catering staff produced hot dinners for isolated and vulnerable people, for up to 85 portions each day. Teams in Blanchardstown and Swords are also producing 200 meals per day supporting the elderly and the vulnerable.

Every little helps, but to those who are finding this time especially hard, a hot meal can go a long way. Working with our clients, we have the power to make real change to peoples’ lives during this time.

Supplier Partnership
As all of our Doctors, Nurses & Health Care Workers are working tirelessly for the Health and safety of others, Richmond Marketing approached us to see how they could help.

As a goodwill gesture for the hard work and determination of frontline staff, they have kindly donated over 200 cases of Redbull and over 100 cases of Fulfil Bars to Hospitals that we operate in, through our supply chain.

Our People

Compass Group Ireland prides itself on employing some of the most dedicated and talented people in the country. Therefore, at times like this, it is important that we show our employees that the commitment goes both ways!

First off, we’d like to salute the dedication and diligence of our front-line teams working to keep essential businesses in Ireland up and running. We’re taking every measure within our power to keep our people and clients safe and have been truly impressed by our teams’ efforts at site level. 

Welfare Packs
As a small gesture, Chris and the team in head office have arranged access to welfare packs for those in the business who are self-isolating. Each home delivered package has been loaded with everything from cereal, pasta and tinned goods to treats and  the all essential hand soap.

Keeping in Touch
When the novelty of remote working wears off, we begin to miss our colleagues, we begin to wonder what everyone else is up to and in some instances, we begin to feel isolated and out of touch with what is going on. We have found the perfect way to stay connected and battle those isolation blues…

First off, our teams have great fun catching up with their work family during our Coffee Mornings, which take palce every Monday & Thursday. There’s no rank and no requirement to join: grab a drink, tune in and chat. There are very few rules other than video’s should be turned on and attendees must dress to impress.

We also have been making great use out of our Workplace group. With a little extra time on our hands, we have been blown away by some fabulous hidden talents– so far we have a Singing Chef, a very talented artist and copious amounts of recipe experiments to mention just a few. Watch this space!

emergency kitchen

#TeamCompassTogether
We know the importance of equipping our teams with the tools and resources they need to navigate the current challenges confidently.

Our latest initiative has seen the introduction of a new section within our employee learning portal, titled #teamcompasstogether. We’ve loaded it up with useful guidance, resources and information on wellbeing and mental health to support anyone in our business feeling the strain. It’s more important now than ever to stay connected, so look out for the #teamcompasstogether updates for the latest support, advice and guidance.

Even if you’re not part of the Compass family, you can always contact our Nourished Life team for guidance on all things health and wellbeing.

Workplace Wellbeing Day
Workplace Wellbeing Day took place this year on Friday 1st May, and like many other companies… we had a very different Workplace Wellbeing Day. Being away from the Workplace didn’t stop us! Our Nutritionist & HR team teamed up to organise some much needed and appreciated online workshops for our employees to enjoy.

This included a live “De-Stress & Get Grounded” workshop designed to guide participants into a mindful and relaxed state, leaving them feeling calmer, more in control, focused and content. Also, as working from home isn’t always easy – stiff necks, sore shoulders and sometimes difficulty switching off after a day’s work, we were given the opportunity to join an online Meditation & Yoga practices.

Responding: Now is not a time to put tools down, it’s a time to pick up new ones
As we mentioned, we don’t like to sit still for too long!

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic we assessed how the Food Services landscape was about to rapidly change, and where our people and their skills are best suited to support this movement.

Deirdre O’Neill

Deirdre, or better know to many as ‘Dee’ has been in the business for almost four years heading up the Marketing function, with over 15 years experience in the Food & Retail industry.

Dee is highly creative and well known for her project management skills, making her the perfect fit for the new expanded role of Future Food Offer Director. This role reflects the approach we have already started to adopt in our business with more focus being placed on Cloud Kitchen operations, and the changing nature of the market.

Alan O’ConnorAlan O’Connor

Alan has worked with Compass Group Ireland for almost 20 years! Alan joined Compass in 2002  and has since risen through the ranks to become our Head of Operations, Strategy Director and most recently into the temporary role of Crisis Management Director.

Alan’s focus is to ensure we are at the forefront of managing the COVID-19 pandemic, taking care of business continuity plans, communications, community work and executing new concepts to support our changing environments.

“Let’s get back to business!” Project Team
When Leo Varadkar made his announcement on Thursday 12th March, we knew the way our restaurants would look, feel and operate would be different for a very long time – however we also knew one thing would never change, people will still need to eat!

So we kicked off a “Let’s get back to business!” Project team to ensure that our restaurants that remain open are supported during these changing times, and we are ready for the rest of our estate to re-open as restrictions are lifted. This project team included SME’s from Culinary, HSE, Marketing, Operations, Commercial and so on. We have been working hard behind the scenes to ensure our teams have everything they need to re-open from signage, to PPE, to new menu options to reflect changing behaviours.