The Leeds and Manchester offices of Reward Finance Group has pulled out all the stops over the last 14 months to raise an amazing £25,500 for its two chosen charities, despite the pandemic causing all its fundraising events to be cancelled.
The money has been presented to Huddersfield-based Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice, which provides invaluable help to hundreds of children and their families across West Yorkshire, and Chorley-based Lancashire Mind, which works passionately to help improve mental health and wellbeing across the region.
Having chosen to support the charities, the Reward team had to devise creative ways of raising the funds without events.
During lockdown the team donated the money they were saving by not having to commute, together with the cost of the usual takeaway coffees, lunchtime sandwiches, and parking charges.
The two offices then challenged each other to walk the distance of the boundary of their respective counties, which is 450 miles around Yorkshire and 417 miles for Lancashire, over a two-week period. However, instead of walking the counties, the Reward team and its supporters smashed the Boundaries Challenge by walking 4,500 miles, which is nearly twice around the whole of the UK, raising £4,800 collectively for both of Reward’s nominated charities.
The total amount raised for the two charities was then match funded by the company.
Speaking about the donation, Lou Addison, Corporate Partnerships Fundraiser at Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice, said,
“We can’t thank Reward enough for the unbelievable support you have given us and the significant amount you have raised. We are blown away by what the team and your supporters have achieved in such an unconventional and difficult time.”
Royal patron of Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice, HRH Princess Beatrice, added,
“Thank you so much for choosing Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice as your charity. As proud patron, it’s amazing to have your support, as it will make a real difference to children with life shortening conditions and their families across West Yorkshire.”
Fundraising Lead at Lancashire Mind, Emma Bateson, was also delighted with the donation.
“On behalf of everyone at Lancashire Mind, thank you for raising an incredible amount for our charity,” she said. “Your support means so much to us and all those who access our support and services. You have put an amazing amount of time and effort into the numerous fundraising activities and ideas and, as a local, independent charity, this donation will make a real difference.
“Thanks also for raising awareness of mental health and wellbeing which is so important. A person with high mental wellbeing is more likely to be happier, more resilient, and less likely to develop a mental health condition. Donations like yours make this vision achievable; providing projects and services that remove barriers and enable people to take steps towards improving their mental wellbeing.”
Marketing and Communications Manager of Reward, Elizabeth Harrison, who nominated Forget Me Not Children’s Hospice, said,
“This year’s fundraising efforts certainly got us all fit, especially when everyone felt compelled to clock up the miles in the Boundaries Challenge for such a worthy cause.
“I even gave myself the challenge of running every day in November and received amazing support for doing so, raising £720.
Lancashire Mind was nominated as Reward’s chosen charity for the Manchester office by Business Development Director, Mike Calvert, who added,
“I had no hesitation in putting forward Lancashire Mind as I saw what they did first hand when they arranged workshops for parents with children coming up to exams in order to help both the parents and kids cope with the stress.
“That really opened my eyes as to what Lancashire Mind did in the community for young children as well as adults. Mental health issues are something people do not talk about, as they see it as a weakness. I therefore wanted to help raise the profile of the charity and the invaluable work they do.”
The Reward Team would like to thank all its business contacts, family and friends who joined in and provided the support and donations for two great charities.