SUEZ skills fund provides festive cheer for 70 UK charities
Now in its third year of operation, the ‘People, Planet, Christmas Fund’ is distributed in response to nominations from SUEZ staff across the UK, many of whom have worked for the charities as part of the company’s ‘Day a Year to Volunteer” programme which encourages colleagues to take an extra day’s paid leave to support a local good cause.
The fund is financed through SCOPE, an innovative in-house consultancy service set-up by SUEZ Chief Technical Development and Innovation Officer Stuart Hayward-Higham to design and deliver solutions for organisations looking to reduce waste and maximise resources at every stage in their value chain. Proceeds from the work go to supporting good causes in the many communities across England and Scotland where SUEZ has a presence.
In total, staff nominated more than 160 different local charities to receive a donation of between £250 and £500 to provide help for the people they support. The final 70 recipients work with children, older people, veterans, and vulnerable adult charities and span community sporting initiatives, food banks, art, theatre, nature and groups helping people with additional needs – to name just a few.
Stuart Hayward-Higham said: "The skills and experience we have within our core business can help product manufacturers design with the planet in mind and ensure they aren’t wasting their time, money, or the Earth’s resources.
"However, innovation can deliver much more in terms of social capital and the not-for-profit status of the SCOPE programme means businesses that use it can deliver social as well as environmental outcomes for themselves and communities across the UK."
Hampshire based charity for deaf children the Elizabeth Foundation is just one charity that has benefitted from the ‘pay it forward’ ethos of the fund. They have used their £500 to put on a range of treats for the children they support – the highlight of which will be a nativity play performed for friends and relatives.
"SUEZ have helped give our young deaf children a fabulous Christmas and we could not be more grateful. Our children have already been enjoying celebrations with parties, a visit from Santa and a Christmas bazaar and will also be performing in our long awaited nativity in front of their proud parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles," said Karen Vaughan BEM, Deputy CEO of the foundation.
Foodbanks have also featured prominently in this year’s round of awards with one West Midlands-based charity being able to support another 30 families over the Christmas period.
"The day I received the phone call I was absolutely blown away,” said Claire Darby of the Claire Bear Caring Foodbank in West Bromwich which received £250. “I can know help support 30 more families which will take my number’s up to 120 this year. This makes me feel so happy that I can do this - it has been a really bad year."
This year’s other People Planet Christmas recipients were:
- Axminster Community Waffle House
- Batley Bulldogs sporting foundation
- Channel Adventure
- Weston super Mare Lions' Club
- Curry on the street
- Aberdeen Counselling and Information Service (ACIS) / Mental Health
- Aberdeen (MHA)
- DISC Newquay
- East Durham veterans Trust
- Exmouth Food Bank
- Merton Community Fridge Project
- The Lucy Rayner Foundation
- Hebburn Help
- Feeding Families
- The Chronicle Sunshine Fund
- The Friends of Hadrian School
- Yarm Wellness
- Mr Old Hall Street Kitchen
- Bolton Wanderers in the Community (BWitC)
- Billingham and Stockton Foodbank
- Little Green Sock Project
- St Christophers Isle of Man
- CDW Foodbank
- Carer Support Wiltshire
- Jamies' Farm
- Small Acts of Kindness
- Social Link
- Somewhere to Go
- Hospitality and Hope Food Bank
- Meltham Crossroads - The Crossroads Project (Foodbank)
- Newcastle West End Food Bank
- Glossopdale food bank
- CAUSE foundation
- Kettering Foodbank
- The Dash Charity
- Christmas for All - via leading links
- London Community Kitchen
- Guisborough Bridge Association
- Mind in Somerset
- Springfield Community Association (North Tyneside)
- Stockton Parish Church
- The Forge Project
- Newcastle West Kinship Care Group
- Bracknell Food Bank
- North Somerset People First
- Stowmarket Area Food Bank
- Brentford FC CST
- Recruitment Junction - Christmas Hamper Appeal
- Sittingbourne Bus Shelter
- Sustainable Merton
- Rugby Foodbank (CV21 2LJ)
- Severn Gorge Countryside Trust
- Southend Food Bank
- YMCA DownsLink Group
- Springwell Community Hub
- St Austell Foodbank
- Mrs Victoria Gorden, The Innovate Project, Aberbargoed.
- the beehive community centre
- The Grange Centre Heart of the Community
- The Living Paintings Trust
- Treviscoe - OAP Lunch Club
- Ponsanooth Playing Fields Association (PPFA)
- The Besom in Taunton
- Voices of Hope
- Wansbeck Xmas Campaign
- Wave - Hayling island
- Every Child Needs a Christmas