About us

About us

Our History

In 2007, Hertfordshire County Council supported the establishment of Hertfordshire Community Meals (HCM) as an independent, not-for-profit, organisation to deliver meals on wheels across the county.

The organisation began with one site in Letchworth, two vehicles, and a team of volunteers delivering meals in the North Hertfordshire district. By 2013, the remaining nine Hertfordshire districts had transferred their clients to HCM and four sites were established across the county in Hemel Hempstead, Letchworth, St Albans, and Hertford. We still operate out of these four sites.

In April 2015, Hertfordshire Community Meals began operating as Hertfordshire Independent Living Service (HILS). This name change was to reflect that we do far more than deliver meals. HILS was now offering a range of services to help keep people healthy, happy, and independent.

We want to increase our impact and reach even more people, so in recent years we have established meals services in new areas. In October 2022 we began delivering meals on wheels across West Sussex, on behalf of West Sussex County Council, as well as taking on clients in Bedfordshire. Following our expansion into these two counties, in October 2023 we took on the meals on wheels service in Hampshire. So that our name truly represents what we do, from October 2023 we changed our name to Health & Independent Living Support (HILS).

Our approach and ethos

We are a charitable social enterprise. This means that we trade to do good and support people, as well as reinvesting any surplus into helping our clients. We have contracts with Hertfordshire County Council,  West Sussex County Council, and Hampshire County Council to deliver meals on wheels on their behalf. We also receive some money from other organisations. We always try to do more every year so that we remain good value for taxpayers.

As we believe in paying people a fair wage, all of our staff are paid at least the Living Wage Foundation’s Living Wage. We only use paid staff to deliver our meals, with volunteers providing vital support to deliver our other services. We are committed to keeping the gender pay gap small, you can view our Gender Pay Gap Report here.

We also believe in helping people back into work. We employ people who have faced barriers to working for a wide range of reasons and we have helped them to thrive in the workplace with training and support.

Our values are at the heart of everything we do and who we are as an organisation. Our values guide the behaviour of every HILS team member and volunteer.


We are caring and compassionate


We act with integrity


We go above and beyond

Annual Impact Report

We make a real difference to people’s lives. We enable independence and improve health and wellbeing. We give support and peace of mind to our thousands of clients, their families and their friends. 

As a charitable social enterprise, our aim is to have positive social impact on as many people as possible to help them stay happy, healthy and independent at home. Every year we produce a report to show how many people we have helped; what those people think about our services; and how we plan to increase our impact in the year ahead. 

Click below to view our latest impact report or previous years’ reports. 

Annual Impact report 2022/23

Annual Impact report 2021/22 

Annual Impact report 2020/21 

Annual Impact report 2019/20 

Annual Impact report 2018/19 

Annual Impact report 2017/18 

We work with a number of partners to support our clients.

Our partners are a variety of community, public, and private sector organisations, all working towards the same goal: to improve the lives of older and disabled people.

We’re proud of what we achieve together. If you think that your organisation would like to partner with HILS on a project, to raise awareness, or to fundraise, please get in touch by emailing comms@hils-uk.org or check out our Corporate Sponsorship page

Sarah at table
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apetito is the country’s leading provider of food for care homes, hospitals, and meals on wheels services. By concentrating on this market, apetito focus on meeting the nutritional needs of older and vulnerable people. We have worked with apetito for many years. They continue to impress us with their dedication, innovation, and the quality of their award-winning food. To find out more about apetito’s food, see here.

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Hertfordshire County Council

As the county’s meals on wheels provider, we work closely with Hertfordshire County Council’s Adult Care Services and Public Health. We support social workers and other frontline staff and we work with commissioners to develop new services. We also work with Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service and Trading Standards to ensure our clients remain safe.

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West Sussex County Council

HILS provides meals on wheels on behalf of West Sussex County Council. We work closely with frontline staff from the Social Care and Health department and service commissioners.

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Hampshire County Council

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Social Business Trust

The Social Business Trust (SBT) is a charity established to help grow social enterprises. They link organisations like HILS with established corporate partners. SBT has connected us with experts in the field and provided invaluable knowledge and expertise, making it possible for us to reach more people with the support of corporate volunteers.

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University of Hertfordshire

HILS participates in research with the University of Hertfordshire’s Centre for Research in Public Health and Community Care. We also host students for work placements.

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HILS is part of the Hertswise partnership of local charities and social enterprises offering community dementia support throughout Hertfordshire. Hertswise is an innovative service designed to support people living with dementia, low level memory loss or mild cognitive impairment as well as their loved ones and carers.

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Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust

Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust (HCT) provides a wide range of community health services. HILS works with HCT to support people to stay living independently at home for longer. HILS also provides a Nutrition and Dietetics support service in the west of Hertfordshire in partnership with HCT.

More about us…


Our Awards & Accreditations


Our Board