© New Zealand Broadcasting School 2020

Return to work helps employees' mental health

Antoinette Spicer
 Amani & Andrew in food department
Amani & Andrew in food department  Emily Hugo Photography

The return to work under level 3 restrictions on Tuesday was particularly beneficial for a small group of Christchurch workers.

Kilmarnock Enterprises is a Christchurch-based charity that delivers a range of outsourcing solutions for businesses.

Kilmarnock employs over 65 people, with a range of abilities. They provide numerous services, including but not limited to collating and packing, assembly, labelling, food packing, shrink wrapping, woodworking, refurbishing, electronic waste recycling and more.

Spokesperson, Sophie Barker, said the return to work was incredibly rewarding for workers' mental health and wellbeing.

"Kilmarnock is not just a workplace for our team, it's also a community. Those who work with us feel a great sense of purpose being here,” explained Barker.

She said about 60% of the workforce returned to work at Level 3 on Tuesday to work in food packing, assembly and processing services.

“We are working with extra health and safety measures to keep our team safe, and within public health guidance,” Barker said.

Kilmarnock's customers represent a range of industries.

“We currently provide food packing and repacking services for some of the largest brands in the country and are qualified to meet your non-perishable food needs," Barker said.

"Our food safety programme covers products such as dried fruits, legumes, nuts, seeds and snack foods, granulated and powdered product, herbs, spices, preserved food items, pre-packaged food, sweets, and chocolate.”

Kilmarnock’s electronic recycling is still on hold due to lockdown restrictions.