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[As Seen on The Irish News] Tom Davies: Picking Up New Chopsticks Recycling Business

[As Seen on The Irish News] Tom Davies: Picking Up New Chopsticks Recycling Business

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Sheffield United midfielder Tom Davies believes launching his sustainable business venture helped his mental health during a difficult maiden season in South Yorkshire.

The 25-year-old left boyhood club Everton last summer after 14 years but injury restricted him to just nine appearances as the Blades were relegated from the top flight.

Gambling and mental health have become issues in football but, despite a long lay-off, Davies found solace preparing for the launch of ChopValue UK, which has opened a micro-factory in Liverpool after collecting almost five million chopsticks to recycle into furniture and homeware.

“I don’t want to do these things that are going to negatively impact me or the people around me,” Davies told the PA news agency.

“Football gives you a great platform to speak about things that are important: sustainability is one thing, mental health another.

“These are things I care about and building a community, feeling like I am doing good, it really does make me feel full and living a good life.

“That’s why footballers need outside interests. Some like golf, fashion or cars. This is the thing I like to do. It’s a nice distraction to have and it’s definitely helped.

“When you are just focused on football and you get an injury it can be quite consuming but I never felt like that for the last injury.”

During his lay-off Davies took a sustainability course to understand better the business, franchised from a Canadian company, he is managing director of.

The former England Under-21 international, who shaved off his trademark shoulder-length hair to raise funds for James’ Place, a charity supporting suicidal men in Liverpool and London, has also made his venture a community interest company to benefit more causes in the city.

“When we start getting an income we will start putting some of that back into the community to help homeless charities, mental health, Everton in the Community,” he added.

“The city has been great for me and I want to try to help people out. We are just trying to make an impact as best we can.”

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