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Protective visors donated to Community Meals staff by local school

Written by on 25th April 2020

Rhondda Cynon Taf Council’s Community Meals team is now delivering hundreds of meals to residents each day – and staff are benefiting from a kind donation of protective visors produced by St John Baptist Church in Wales High School, Aberdare.

In total, 635 hot meals are currently being delivered to Rhondda Cynon Taf residents’ doorsteps each weekday, via 14 delivery routes – including to 150 vulnerable people, served directly into their homes. On weekends, 600 frozen meals are being delivered, while the service is also delivering 259 meals each week to 37 NHS sheltered residents unable to prepare meals on their own.

The Community Meals team is working extremely hard from its kitchen in Ynyshir, and as a result of additional clients due to the national health emergency staff are now also operating from a second kitchen at Aberdare Community School. This second site has increased production capacity, and allowed kitchen staff to adhere to current social distancing guidance.

Delivery staff are leaving meals on clients’ doorsteps and awaiting collection from a distance – however, for vulnerable clients they must enter their home.

As an additional protection for these deliveries, St John Baptist Church in Wales High School has donated up to 40 re-usable protective visors. Following the closure of the school in March along with all others in Wales, the protective visors have been produced by a team of five teachers from the Design Technology department, using the school’s laser cutter equipment.

The Council is one of many local organisations to receive this donation from St John’s – as around 400 visors and 300 facemask clips have been produced in total, and given to local supermarkets, pharmacies and the NHS.

Jason Cates, Curriculum Leader for Design Technology at St John Baptist Church in Wales High School, Aberdare, said: “We have been producing the protective equipment since the school closed in March, and were putting the message out on the school’s social media channels. That’s when the Council got in contact, to receive the PPE for their delivery staff.

“A small group of Design Technology staff are on the production line, using school equipment each week – even during the recent Easter holiday. We are using laser cutters to produce the visors at a low cost, and they are reusable by cleaning with alcohol. This type of protective equipment is effective for tasks like food delivery, and we are glad that we were able to help.

Councillor Joy Rosser, Rhondda Cynon Taf Council’s Cabinet Member for Education and Inclusion Services, added: “I’d like to thank the staff at St John Baptist Church in Wales High School, Aberdare, for their fantastic effort in producing and donating protective equipment – now used by Community Meals staff when delivering hot meals to residents who need them.

“This is an excellent use of school resources at this time, which is not only making a difference to our essential Council staff performing key roles in the community, but to other important organisations that people rely on – such as supermarkets, pharmacies and the NHS. The school’s efforts are another example of the community pulling together to make a difference right now.”