Suffolk BS donates over £45,000 to local charities

Suffolk BS donates over £45,000 to local charities

To celebrate the milestone, representatives from the charity were invited to the head office of Suffolk Building Society in Ipswich to discuss the impact these funds are having on the local area.

The Safe Homes for Suffolk campaign focuses on the belief that everyone has a right to a safe home.

The campaign supports three charities to help assist homelessness, social isolation and domestic abuse.

Richard Norrington, CEO at Suffolk Building Society, said: “As a mutual society, we passionately believe in putting some of our profits back into the local community. We’ve chosen to help protect the environment and advocate for safe homes.

“We are incredibly grateful to our members who trust us with their savings and mortgages. It’s because of this that we’re able to invest in the local community we serve.

“There are always practical opportunities for our members to get involved too. Keep an eye on our blog this year to find out more about member events that involve our charity partners.”


Charities express gratitude for donation

Claire Staddon, CEO at Emmaus Suffolk, said it worked with “vulnerable and socially isolated people, and those at risk of homelessness, across the East of Suffolk”.

“This generous donation allows us to continue the vital work we do within the community, from our wellbeing hubs to our new modular homes on Felixstowe Road in Ipswich,” she added.

Jools Ramsey-Palmer, chief executive officer at Ipswich Housing Action Group, said that in 2022 to 2023, 110 people were found bedded down on the streets of Ipswich. The charity is “on hand for anyone who needs support, advice, and practical help”.

“This contribution from Suffolk Building Society means we can invite people in for breakfast and offer hot showers and washing facilities – basic human needs most of us take for granted.”

Sally Winston, chief executive officer at Lighthouse Women’s Aid, said that the charity supports women, young people and children who are experiencing and have been impacted by domestic abuse.

“These additional funds will help us to run essential services from our Women’s Centre. This lifeline of support enables women to recover from the traumatic effects of domestic abuse, take the time to make informed choices and move on to a life free from abuse,” she said.


Suffolk BS teaming up with Suffolk Wildlife Trust

Through its Saving Suffolk initiative, the mutual “considers itself a steward of nature and the environment – a responsibility it takes seriously”.

Colleagues and members volunteer for local projects or use some of its profits to “provide much-needed funding for habitat protection”.

In 2023, the mutual focuses on a company of wilding a new nature reserve for Suffolk, and it offered support to Suffolk Wildlife Trust.

Michael Strand, community fundraising manager at Suffolk Wildlife Trust, said: “As the only organisation dedicated wholly to safeguarding Suffolk’s wildlife and countryside, we are incredibly grateful for this donation.

“By supporting Martlesham Wilds, Suffolk Building Society is helping to restore a new 289-acre nature reserve. This ‘wilded’ land will provide a habitat for species including barn owl, curlew, yellowhammer, and fallow deer, as well as providing a wonderful environment for people to enjoy nature – both now and for generations to come.”

Vida raises £150,000 for Crisis over three years

Vida raises £150,000 for Crisis over three years

Vida colleagues, along with partners and customers, volunteered and fundraised through initiatives like Crisis at Christmas campaigns, ice bucket challenges and the annual Vida Alternative Marathon event.

The lender, which last year cut select mortgage rates, has confirmed that it will be continuing its partnership with Crisis in 2024 and beyond.

Anth Mooney (pictured), Vida CEO, said: “We like to think big at Vida, so when announcing our partnership with Crisis three years ago, I had no doubt that our colleagues would come up with creative ways to raise money, and our alternative marathon event has seen colleagues jump from planes and climb mountains for this fantastic cause.

“Our ambition is to help everyone find a place to call home, and this continues to be core to our mission. The past three years have been difficult for many with the pandemic and the rising cost of living, so we are delighted to continue our partnership with Crisis and help more people start their journey out of homelessness.”

Matt Downie, Crisis’ chief executive, said: “We’re extremely grateful for Vida’s ongoing support. Because of their incredible fundraising and volunteering efforts, we will be able to continue to be there for people experiencing homelessness as they begin to rebuild their lives.

“Every day, our frontline services support thousands of people facing homelessness, and we know all too well the damage it causes to people’s lives. Now, with living costs rising and a severe lack of affordable housing, more and more people are being pushed to the brink. That’s why the support of companies like Vida is crucial if we’re going to see homelessness ended for good.”

Leeds BS teams up with charity to offer financial education to care leavers

Leeds BS teams up with charity to offer financial education to care leavers

As part of the partnership, Leeds Building Society – which raised over £16,700 at its AGM for charity – will offer £72,000 of funding to Become so care leavers can “gain access to vital advice about living independently”.

The relationship with Become has led the mutual to develop a “programme tailored to the specific needs of care-experienced young people”.

The donation will fund education on financial resilience for young care leavers, which includes sessions on living independently, managing their own rented accommodation and financial advice to put them in a better position to get onto the property ladder.

Recent government data has shown that the number of care leavers aged 18 to 20 facing homelessness has risen by a third in the last four years, but through partnerships like this, care leavers can be “settled into stable and permanent accommodation”, the mutual says.

In the first phase of the partnership, Become will receive funds and support to create the educational resources catered to the needs of care-experienced young people, and in the second half of the year, the charity will deliver the training and evaluate the impact it is having.

Wendy Carter, responsible business lead at Leeds Building Society, said: “We are proud to be working with Become as our new financial education partner to create and deliver resources to support care-experienced young people.

“The partnership closely links to our purpose and belief that everyone deserves a place to call home. By working with Become, we hope to support care leavers who may experience additional barriers to stable accommodation.”

She continued: “We are thrilled to be able to work in partnership with Become to develop a financial education programme to empower vulnerable young people who face financial independence at an early age, to make informed choices that bring them closer to securing a place of their own.”

Chloe Grant, director of services at Become, added: “Every year, we see over 11,000 young people leaving the care system in the UK. From the day they turn 18, they are expected to become independent overnight, so it is no surprise that young people leaving care are at higher risk of poverty, mental ill health, and homelessness.

“The generous £72,000 worth of funding from Leeds Building Society will allow us to create and deliver resources that will help care-experienced young people feel supported as they navigate managing their own home.”

She added: “As the UK’s national charity for children in care and care leavers, we are passionate about supporting care-experienced young people to thrive.

“With 25 per cent of all homeless people estimated to have been in the care system during childhood, we know the importance of helping care leavers to better understand their rights and entitlements, so that they are supported into adulthood in secure, stable accommodation.”


Gatehouse Bank raises over £15,000 for Rainbow Trust

Gatehouse Bank raises over £15,000 for Rainbow Trust

The charity was selected as Gatehouse Bank’s charity partner through an all-staff vote and partners a family with a family support worker who provides practical and emotional support for the whole family.

The support is tailored to each family depending on their needs. This could include driving them to medical appointments, keeping a child company during hospital stays or organizing activities to help sick children and their siblings.

Every £30 raised offers an hour’s practical and emotional support for a family caring for a seriously ill child.

Gatehouse Bank organised various fundraising efforts throughout the year including charity walks and runs, groups of colleagues completing the Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenges and the executive team taking part in the Thames Moonlight 10 Walk.

The firm also facilitated charity raffles and supported the charity’s 72-hour match funding No Family Alone Appeal.


Gatehouse Bank: ‘Proud to support Rainbow Trust’

Charles Haresnape, CEO of Gatehouse Bank, said: “We are proud to have supported a fantastic charity, Rainbow Trust, over the last year, and I am especially pleased to see the dedication colleagues have shown in actively organising their own fundraising efforts.

“Thanks to our colleagues, we collectively have raised £15,500 and hope that our contribution has made a difference to Rainbow Trust and the families they support.”

Elodie Pinn, corporate partnerships fundraiser at Rainbow Trust, said: “I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone at Gatehouse Bank for raising £15,500 in support of Rainbow Trust over the last year. Their efforts raising money and awareness is greatly appreciated, raising enough to support seven families caring for a seriously ill child for a whole year.”

Tipton and Coseley BS raises nearly £10,000 for multiple charities

Tipton and Coseley BS raises nearly £10,000 for multiple charities

The charitable foundation was founded in 1999 and aims to support health and educational charities based around the West Midlands.

The foundation consists of a panel of Tipton employees who meet with members of the community twice a year to allocate funds.

Donations in December will help charities including Priory Park Amateur Boxing Club, St Giles Hospice, Omega, the National Association for End of Life Care, NICE – Centre for Movement Disorders, Wolverhampton Samaritans, Birmingham Hospice and The Mary Stevens Hospice.

Amy Fellows branches and training deputy manager at Tipton and Coseley Building Society, said: “2023 has been a particularly challenging time for charities as many people struggle with the cost of living crisis.

“Supporting local people has always been one of the guiding principles of the Tipton so we are pleased that we are able to make donations to these wonderful charities.”

Tipton and Coseley BS donates to children in need for Christmas

Tipton and Coseley BS donates to children in need for Christmas

Boxes with donated gifts have been collected in Tipton and Coseley branches and delivered to Santa’s Black Country Toy Appeal to be distributed to those in need across the region. 

The charity estimates that nearly 105,000 children in the Black Country are living in poverty. 

Emma Gibbons, charity committee member at the Tipton and Coseley Building Society, said: “Being active in our local community is important to us and we are conscious of the increasing pressure on the cost of living.  

“That is why I am delighted that customers and colleagues have donated a magnificent amount of toys to Santa’s Black Country Toy Appeal again this year.” 

This is one of the many charitable events the mutual has taken part in this year. 


Tipton and Coseley team up with Citizens Advice

Last month, the Tipton and Coseley Building Society teamed up with Citizens Advice to provide support to people living in the West Midlands with benefits advice, housing and consumer rights. 

The mutual also donated £24,000 to the Black Country food bank to support people in need of the organisation’s services and this summer its colleagues raised £550 for its local Air Ambulance Charity. 

Together supports Cash for Kids’ Christmas campaign

Together supports Cash for Kids’ Christmas campaign

The Mission Christmas initiative is to support children living in poverty and Together will make a financial donation to the programme. The lender will also volunteer and take part in a matched gifting programme. 

In October, the lender donated £10,000 to the charity. Since then, Marc Goldberg, Together’s CEO sales and distribution, will add another £20,000 to its donation amount. 

Some 750 of the lender’s employees will support the event by gifting donations across Manchester to fulfil the 37,000 applications for presents. Colleagues will give gifts from the Mission Christmas wishlist and Together will match this with another present. 

Kevin Fisher, Together’s chief people officer, said: “Many families face the prospect of not being able to give their children a present this Christmas – we want to help Cash for Kids reach as many needy families as possible by mobilising our colleagues and providing financial support too.   

“We’re pleased that our people want to play their part in supporting our local community.”   

Jess Rigby, charity manager at Cash for Kids said: “We are so absolutely over the moon that Together has continued its support to Mission Christmas with a further donation and also engaging colleagues to support the event.  

“Through the funds and gifts that we receive, we will be closer to being able to bring Christmas to the 37,000 children in Greater Manchester who would otherwise wake up to no gift at all. For a small charity like Cash for Kids to get the support from a business like Together makes a huge difference.” 

UTB’s Mollett embarks on ‘toughest footrace on Earth’ for charity

UTB’s Mollett embarks on ‘toughest footrace on Earth’ for charity

Described as ‘the toughest footrace on Earth’, the six-day marathon is 250km and takes place in the Sahara Desert in temperatures of 40 to 50 degrees centigrade. Mollett and his fellow competitors must carry their belongings during the race and have a venom pump to hand. 

The marathon is being held in April next year. 

Mollett will be raising money for the South East Cancer Help Centre and Wings for Life, a charity which funds research into cures for spinal cord injuries. He has covered the cost of entering the event as well as travel expenses. This means any money raised will go directly to the charities. 

Mollett (pictured) said: “I’ve never run a 250km race before, let alone in these conditions, so this is going to be a real stretch for me. If anyone likes to see people well outside of their comfort zone and in discomfort as a trade-off for a decent sponsorship, this definitely qualifies. 

“Wings for Life and South East Cancer Help Centre are fantastic charities, and all the donations will help to improve the lives of those affected by spinal cord injuries, and provide support to cancer patients in the South East. Please donate generously so that I only have to do this once.” 

To sponsor Mollett please go to his fundraising page: 

The West Brom branches to become Barnardo’s donation points

The West Brom branches to become Barnardo’s donation points

Giving Tuesday has taken place every year on 28 November since 2012 and encourages people to do good by volunteering, sharing skills or donating.

From 28 November, Giving Tuesday, until 1 December all 34 branches will be donation points for customers to donate clothes.

All clothing will be accepted provided it is in good condition, with donations of good quality menswear, womenswear and winter clothing will be especially welcomed.

Barnardo’s works with children, young people and their parents and carers to make sure that every child has the best start in life.

Amy Mason, ESG co-ordinator at the West Brom, said: “As a mutual, we’ve long been committed to giving back to our local communities to help create a fairer society, and so we’re really pleased to be celebrating this Giving Tuesday with our charity partner Barnardo’s.

“Whether it’s a full bag of clothing or just one t-shirt, the donations made via our branches will make a big difference to those who receive them.”

Hugh Sherriffe, Barnardo’s central regional director, said: “We would like to say a huge thank you to our partners at the West Brom for choosing to celebrate Giving Tuesday by giving back.

“Donations of good quality clothing will be gratefully received by our many retail stores in the West Midlands and will help us continue to bring positive change for children and young people across the UK.”

The Tipton donates £24,000 to the Black Country Foodbank

The Tipton donates £24,000 to the Black Country Foodbank

According to the Trussell Trust, record numbers of food parcels have been given to people in the last year and the rising cost of living has led to more than 750,000 turning to food banks for the first time. 

The Black Country Foodbank has been running since 2006 and provides emergency food and toiletries to those in need. 

Adam Evetts, CEO Designate at the Tipton, said: “The cost of living crisis continues to have a devastating impact for thousands of people. The Black Country Foodbank is a lifesaver, helping people across the Black Country during these difficult times.  

“We are immensely proud to support the incredible work the Foodbank does, which we hope will make a big difference to our local community. We will also be introducing food and toiletry collection points in all of our branches in order to allow our members to make donations to the Foodbank.” 

Jen Coleman, CEO of the Black Country Foodbank, added: “It has been great to partner with The Tipton and we look forward to working together over the next few months. Financial donations are critical as they help us to meet our immediate needs plus plan and budget for the future.  

“We are really grateful for the support from The Tipton especially as demand for our services has increased again this year.”