Community retailer The Midcounties Co-operative is celebrating a record £400,000 raised for its charity partner Help the Hospices.
From cycle rides and sponsored walks to sky dives and ‘Give at the Till’ initiatives, big-hearted colleagues, members and customers went the extra mile to support the two-year fundraising drive.
In addition to raising the biggest total ever for a charity partner, Midcounties’ colleagues also volunteered their services and gave more than 18,000 hours of community work for the cause.
The funds raised will benefit 11 hospices in its trading areas at Compton Hospice, Wolverhampton; Cotswold Care Hospice, Gloucestershire; Great Oaks Hospice, Forest of Dean; Helen and Douglas House, Oxford; Katharine House Hospice, Banbury; Kemp Hospice, Worcestershire; Prospect Hospice, Swindon; Severn Hospice, Shropshire; Sir Michael Sobell House, Oxford; South Bucks Hospice, High Wycombe; and Walsall Hospice.
Midcounties Chief Executive Ben Reid, who personally raised more than £4,000 for Help the Hospices by running the New York Marathon, paid tribute to everyone who got behind the charity partnership.
He said: “Statistically around half of our customers and staff are likely to know someone who has been cared for by a hospice and there is no doubt that people identified with their local hospices and embraced a cause which is close to their hearts. That support is shown in the amount we have raised and also by the many stories people will tell about what they have done and how they have made a real difference.
“This community involvement is what sets the Co-operative apart from other businesses and it has shown Team Midcounties at its best. I am sure the links we have established with our local hospices will continue for many years to come.”
The inspiring, inventive and enthusiastic support for the charity was recognised at a special gala evening at Ragley Hall, Warwickshire, where the grand total was revealed and presented to Help the Hospices. A 20-minute film on some of the fundraising highlights and the people behind them showed why the initiative had been such a success.
Colleagues who had shown real commitment to fundraising and volunteering for the charity partnership were invited to the event as a thank-you.
David Praill, Chief Executive of Help the Hospices, said: “Most hospices are small charities rooted in the communities that they serve, so we are extremely grateful to Midcounties for giving local hospices the exciting opportunity to benefit from this huge collective fundraising effort. The money that has been raised will enable hospices to provide the best possible care to adults and children with life-limiting and terminal illnesses, as well as to their friends and families.”
Pictured from left at the presentation are Stephen Ballantyne and Bernie Nolan from Help the Hospices, Vice President John Boot and Lindsay Roche from The Midcounties Co-operative, Sister Frances Dominica, founder of Helen and Douglas House, and Ben Reid, Midcounties Chief Executive.