Tag Archives: charity

Charity Pioneers campaign recognises good deeds

Accounting software company Sage is celebrating the good deeds of the most inspirational charity workers in the UK and US. The recently announced Charity Pioneers campaign recognises hard-working people that have dedicated their lives to a cause or charity. 

Charity Pioneers Campaign Photo

Sage is on the lookout for the most groundbreaking and life-changing charitable faces working in the UK and US today. Whether they’re promoting causes like entrepreneurship, diversity or education, these individuals actively strive to make the world a better place for young people, women, and military veterans. The charity pioneers Sage has chosen so far come from a range of backgrounds and demographics and yet they all share one thing in common – they’re changing lives for the better and that deserves to be celebrated.

Nominate a Charity Pioneer

Know someone that deserves recognition? Sage is still hunting for the very best. To submit a nomination, enter the name of the chosen nominee, the type of charity they work for, and the reason they should be recognised. Note that nominees must work with young people, women, or military veterans.

Sage Group logo

Not only could nominees feature alongside other Charity Pioneers, but their charity could also win the GBP equivalent of $5,000 of Enterprise Fund funding (Sage Foundation). The competition closes on 21st September 2018 and the campaign page can be found here: https://www.sage.com/en-gb/c/v/charity-pioneers/.

Sage offers a range of products to help charities and nonprofits, such as its accounting software which has been specifically designed to handle charities’ financial needs, including GiftAid and VAT.

Ethos public relations supports charity communications

Ethos public relations is committed to supporting charities and was delighted to sponsor and manage the design and print of a flyer and poster for a new music festival.

Music for the Monty posterMusic for the Monty takes place in June as part of Welshpool Transport Festival. One of the directors of Ethos public relations has been involved in helping to organise the event and Ethos public relations took responsibility for preparing an A4 poster and an A6 flyer to promote it. One of the Ethos team designed the publicity materials and the logo was kindly donated by designer Dave Clucas.

Public relations is important for all types of organisation, but for charities and not-for-profits it is especially important for reaching new and existing supporters. Ethos public relations is committed to helping charities publicise their activities and has worked with many local and national charities in its 20 year history.

This website, which is managed by Ethos public relations, contains lots of useful information to help charities promote their organisation, including advice on social media, video production and photography. There are also some ‘top tips’ on PR for charities.

Shaun Fisher, one of the directors of Ethos public relations, said: “We are passionate about working with charities, community groups and voluntary organisations to get their messages out to the wider public. This isn’t just because it is our business, but because we have a longstanding commitment to raising awareness of the activities and achievements of the charitable sector.”

You can find out more about the work that Ethos public relations does to promote charity events here and to contact Ethos public relations click here.

Music for the Monty takes place on 23 and 24 June 2018 and features an evening concert at Welshpool Town Hall on Saturday 23 June, as well as free music at venues across Welshpool over the weekend. The event has been organised to raise funds for the restoration on the Montgomery Canal which stretches from Shropshire to mid-Wales.

Prostate Cancer UK calls on UK to step up to cancer challenge

For the first time, more men are dying from prostate cancer each year than women are from breast cancer, making the male disease the third biggest cancer killer in the UK. Prostate Cancer UK is urging the public to ‘March for Men’ this summer to help curb the trend.

Prostate Cancer UKFigures released by Prostate Cancer UK reveal that 11,819 men now die from prostate cancer every year in the UK, compared to 11,442 women dying from breast cancer. It means the male-only disease is now the third most common cancer to die from, after lung and bowel cancer.

Since 1999, the number of women dying from breast cancer has been steadily decreasing, while prostate cancer deaths are still on the rise. During that time, breast cancer has benefited from a screening programme, significant investments in research and more than double the number of published studies compared to ones for prostate cancer.

Despite the alarming figures, the prospects for men with prostate cancer are actually better than ever, with men diagnosed today two-and-a-half times more likely to live for 10 years or more than if they were diagnosed in 1990. Yet due mainly to an increasing and ageing population, the number of men dying from the disease is growing.

Prostate Cancer UK Chief Executive, Angela Culhane, said: “It’s incredibly encouraging to see the tremendous progress that has been made in breast cancer over recent years. But with half the investment and half the research, it’s not surprising that progress in prostate cancer is lagging behind.

“The good news is that many of these developments could be applied to prostate cancer and we’re confident that with the right funding, we can dramatically reduce deaths within the next decade.”

Prostate Cancer UK believes that around £120 million of research needs to be funded over the next eight years to reverse the trend and achieve their 10-year goal to halve the number of expected prostate cancer deaths by 2026. And the charity is asking the public to help raise the vital funds needed by signing up for one of their March for Men walks this summer.

“Plans to create an accurate test fit for use as part of a nationwide prostate cancer screening programme, as well as developing new treatments for advanced prostate cancer are already well underway. But to achieve these aims, we need to increase our investment in research.

“We’re calling on the nation to sign up to a March for Men this summer to help raise the funds we desperately need to stop prostate cancer being a killer.”

Credit union calls for volunteers

London Capital Credit Union is looking for volunteers to help deal with the ever increasing number of member enquiries.

Volunteering graphic

The credit union is a not for profit savings and loans co-operative based near Archway tube station in London, which is dedicated to encouraging people to save rather than borrow, while also providing low cost loans when needed. They are looking for additional volunteers to help their busy team assist with enquiries from members.

Volunteers need to have certain skills and capabilities, including being good with numbers, competent in basic spoken English, honest, reliable, friendly and outgoing. In return, the credit union will provide experience and training including in customer service, effective telephone use, using computers and different software packages and effective office management.

Volunteering with the credit union can provide many benefits, including a ‘feel good factor’ of knowing you are helping people, excellent work experience in financial services, experience of working in a busy commercial environment and access to training and improved employment opportunities.

Martin Groombridge, London Capital Credit Union Chief Executive, said: “As a financial co-operative, which is owned and run by our members, the credit union relies on the support and dedication of a team of volunteers working alongside our small staff of paid employees. A number of additional volunteers are now being sought to assist with the increase in our business as we help more and more people manage their money.

“Although the positions are unpaid, they offer several benefits, including meeting new people and making friends while working in a supportive and friendly team, gaining direct experience of the financial services industry, strengthening your CV and helping to benefit the community.”

To find out more about volunteering with the credit union click here, or call them on 020 7561 1786 for an informal, no obligation discussion.

Big Society Capital invests £2.5 million in Charity Bank

Charity Bank logoBig Society Capital has invested £2.5 million in the share capital of Charity Bank and has committed in principle to invest a further £2.5 million on or before 1st December 2017. This will complete Big Society Capital’s pledge in March 2014 to invest up to £14.5 million in ordinary shares of Charity Bank.

Charity Bank, the ethical bank that uses savings to make loans to charities and social enterprises, has lent over £180 million since 2002. Charity Bank is run for the sector and owned by the sector, as all of its shareholders are charitable trusts, foundations and social purpose organisations. This further investment from Big Society Capital will allow it to make more loans to social sector organisations in the coming years.

This investment is made as Charity Bank experiences continued growth. Charity Bank has had a strong start to the year with £28 million of new loan approvals in the first five months of 2017. This continues the momentum since Big Society Capital’s initial investment in 2014, with the loan book growing by over 25% per year in the two years to 31st December 2016.

George Blunden, Chairman of Charity Bank, says: “These further injections of capital from Big Society Capital will enable us to meet the growing demand for loans from charities and social enterprises.

“Share capital is vital to our mission. It underpins the bank and enables us to leverage our savers’ money. An investment in Charity Bank creates a multiple effect – for every £1 of share capital invested we can lend £8 to help create lasting social change in our communities.”

“When Big Society Capital pledged its original investment, we said that we hoped it would be the first of a small number of significant new investors over the next five to ten years. The Mercers Charitable Foundation invested a further £1 million in 2015 and the Barrow Cadbury Trust invested £250,000 in 2016.

“We are inviting other charitable trusts, foundations and social purpose organisations to invest in our share capital and join with us in using the tools of finance to create a better society for all.”

Anna Shiel, Head of Origination of Big Society Capital says: “Big Society Capital’s investment in Charity Bank plays an important role in making capital available to small and medium sized charities. Over 850 loans have now been made to organisations totalling more than £180m. These loans have helped support people all around the UK, with 97% of organisations saying it has contributed to achieving their mission and 68% saying the loan helped them to expand their services. Upon the completion of our investment, we look forward to seeing more people and communities supported by their work.”

Pupils encouraged to find out more about Far East Prisoners of War

75 years afteCOFEPOW Education Programmer the Fall of Singapore in the Second World War, a charity dedicated to keeping alive the memories of Far East Prisoners of War is launching a national education initiative for primary schools.

COFEPOW (Children and Families of Far East Prisoners of War) is to launch its Education Programme at the National Memorial Arboretum on Wednesday 15th February 2017.

The charity has two objectives, to provide and maintain a memorial to all British service personnel who were prisoners of war in South East Asia under Japanese Occupation during World War Two, and to advance the education of the public about prisoners of war in South East Asia under Japanese occupation from 1942–45.

The first objective was reached 12 years ago, when the charity unveiled its Memorial Building at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire. With the launch of a competition for primary schools, COFEPOW is now developing its second objective.

Paul Watson, Chair of COFEPOW, said: “One of our functions at COFEPOW is to educate future generations so that our brave ancestors are never forgotten. As a result, we have created this exciting new initiative to help students understand what happened, whilst giving them the opportunity to experience different learning platforms to develop transferable skills for their future – skills such as confidence, teamwork, creativity, communication and working to deadlines.

“Members of COFEPOW are relatives of those who fought and were held captive in the Far East in World War Two. Whilst many of the prisoners are no longer with us, as relatives we saw first hand the lasting effects that the time in prison camps had on these men and women – both mentally and physically.

“We are all extremely proud of our loved ones for their war effort and we strive to ensure that what they went through will always be remembered and respected. By creating this competition, we feel we are helping the next generation to understand a little bit more about the Forgotten War.”

The COFEPOW National Enterprise Competition for Primary Schools will run from 11th November 2017 (Remembrance Day) to 15th February 2018 (the anniversary of the Fall of Singapore).

Working in teams, students will be tasked with preparing a television news report explaining that the war is over in the Far East and that all those held as prisoners will be released and sent home. In order to prepare their news report, students must find out as much as possible about the life of a Far East Prisoner of War.

Once complete, schools will need to send the filmed news reports on DVD to COFEPOW, who will judge all the entries and choose a winner. Students that take part will receive a Certificate of Achievement and the winning team will receive a special COFEPOW VJ Day 70th Anniversary Commemorative Medal for their school.

The programme was prepared in collaboration with Jayne Greene, who is experienced in producing education packages for schools and is a volunteer for COFEPOW.

If you are a teacher, school governor, or otherwise involved in delivering the national curriculum at primary school level, and would like to find out more about this new initiative, you are invited to attend the launch of the COFEPOW Education Programme at the National Memorial Arboretum on Wednesday 15th February 2017, commencing at 1pm.

To book your place at the launch, please email COFEPOW Secretary Alan Wills at alanwills@blueyonder.co.uk or click here for further details. More information for teachers is available here.

Support Severn Hospice with a Forget Me Not flower this Christmas

Severn HoSevern Hospice Forget Me Not Christmasspice is selling Forget Me Not flowers to help raise funds this Christmas.

The bespoke flowers, which have been crafted by Oswestry based British Ironworks Centre, are shaped from iron and glazed with beautiful forget me not blue, before being mounted on a slim but sturdy iron pole.

Each flower measures 17cm in diameter and 43cm in length and is packaged in a beautiful presentation box. The flowers can be purchased online and are available for delivery or collection, as well as being available in all Severn Hospice shops.

Severn Hospice Legacy and In Memoriam Advisor Elodie Home said: “Our Forget Me Not flowers will make a perfect gift this Christmas and are a fantastic way to support our hospice at this special time of year.

“Our Forget Me Not flowers have already raised an incredible £80,000 for our hospice and the sale of just one flower funds two hours of nursing care for one of our patients. We need to raise £7 million each year to fund our care and by giving a Forget Me Not flower this Christmas you will be helping us to support the families that need us in Shropshire and Mid Wales.”

Severn Hospice gives specialist care and support free of charge to families across Shropshire and Mid Wales who are living with an incurable illness. Since 1989, it has given free care and support to more than 27,000 patients and their loved ones during their time of greatest need. They now help more than 2,800 local people every year.

Severn Hospice Forget Me Not flowers, priced £25 each, are available to purchase in all Severn Hospice shops and at both hospice sites in Telford and Shrewsbury. Alternatively, flowers can be purchased via the charity’s website at www.severnhospice.org.uk/forgetmenot.

Muscle charity seeks funding from Aviva

Aviva Community Fund bannerNMC Midlands, a charity set up to offer support to people with muscular dystrophy and other muscle wasting diseases in the Midlands region, has been shortlisted for the Aviva Community Fund and is looking for people to vote for them.

The Neuromuscular Centre (NMC) Midlands, based in Coventry, provides support for over 400 clients who suffer from muscular dystrophy, a muscle wasting disease with no treatment or cure. The Centre has been shortlisted for the Aviva Community Fund, and now needs votes to help it win up to £1000.

The Aviva Community Fund offers the chance for local community projects to win funding and with enough votes from supporters, NMC Midlands has the chance to be entered into the finals, where a judging panel will award the funds.

The correct physiotherapy is essential to people with muscle wasting diseases as it maintains mobility and reduces the rate of muscle deterioration. However, people with these conditions experience a significant reduction in the amount of physiotherapy they receive from the NHS after turning the age of 19.

One of the main services NMC Midlands offers is free and continuous specialist physiotherapy for people with muscle wasting diseases. In addition, they have services available to offer support for other areas of life that become challenging to people with these conditions.

To vote for NMC Midlands, click on the following link before 18 November 2016: https://community-fund.aviva.co.uk/voting/project/view/16-913.

To find out more about the wide range of services offered by NMC Midlands and how to get in touch click here.

Dream comes true for ‘Songaminute Man’

A dream has come true for ‘Songaminute Man’ Teddy Mac with the release of his first single, which will raise funds for Alzheimer’s Society.

Song a minute man

The 80-year-old former Butlin’s Redcoat, who has dementia, is heading for the music charts after being signed up by the famous Decca Records label.

Teddy ‘Mac’ McDermott shot to fame online as ‘The Songaminute Man‘, when his son Simon posted videos of his father singing during their very own Carpool Karaoke on YouTube, which rapidly went viral and became a worldwide hit.

Simon’s aim was to raise money and awareness for Alzheimer’s Society, following advice and support the McDermott family received from the charity’s National Dementia Helpline following his father’s diagnosis.

The unlikely double-act proved to be hugely successful, contributing to the country’s leading dementia charity to the tune of more than £100,000  – a massive 11569% increase on Simon’s initial fundraising aim of £1,000.

Now chart success beckons for Teddy with his own version of the Frank Sinatra classic You Make Me Feel So Young which was released on 23 September. Royalties from the single will be split between Alzheimer’s Society and the McDermott family.

Simon said:  “This is a dream come true not only for Dad, but for the entire family. There have been some really tough days in the last few years, especially for mum. The more Alzheimer’s kicked in, the more Dad became aggressive, both physically and verbally. It was incredibly difficult to manage and terrifying at times.

“We threw an 80th birthday party last month and thought that would be his last time singing solo for people, so it’s amazing to think he now has a single coming out. And it’s great to help Alzheimer’s Society, who provide so much support to other families going through the same things as us.”

Despite often not recognising his own son, Teddy, who was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2013, remembers the lyrics of numerous songs and that earned him the nickname, ‘The Songaminute Man’.

Jeremy Hughes, Chief Executive at Alzheimer’s Society, said: “We know music can have a positive impact on people affected by dementia and that favourite songs or pieces of music can also be powerful prompts for reminiscence. This is clearly the case when Teddy sings and is transported back to his time as an entertainer.

“We’re incredibly grateful money raised from this single will be used to fund Alzheimer’s Society services like our National Dementia Helpline, which supported Teddy’s family. Teddy’s story shows life doesn’t end when dementia begins, and you can fulfil your dreams even after a dementia diagnosis.”

Buy ‘You make me feel so young’ by The Songaminute Man

Preston man running in memory of POW grandfather

James Housden from Preston is running a half marathon to raise awareness of the plight of Far East prisoners of war in World War Two. 

James  Housden who is fundraising for COFEPOWJames is taking part in the Great North Run in September to raise money for national charity, COFEPOW, which manages the Far East Prisoners of War Memorial Building at the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire and works to preserve the memory of the Far East Prisoners of War.

The charity is fundraising to replace the computer equipment at the FEPOW Memorial Building. The Memorial Building has many computer generated displays to enhance the visitor experience, but most of the equipment is now 11 years old and desperately needs replacing.

James is the son of COFEPOW trustee Paul Housden and last year completed the Coast-to-Coast cycle ride with his Dad to raise money to help COFEPOW commemorate the 70th Anniversary of VJ Day, when Japan finally surrendered, brining an end to the Second World War.

More than 200,000 Allied civilians and service personnel were taken prisoner by the Japanese in February 1942. By VJ Day on 15 August 1945, some 50,000 of these people had died.

James said: “My Grandfather was one of the lucky ones who returned after being a prisoner of war. The story of all the captives is told at the National Memorial Arboretum and, by raising funds to help replace the outdated computer equipment at the Far East POW Memorial Building, I can help keep alive the memory of what my Granddad and his fellow captives went through. It is really important that future generations remember what happened during the Second World War.”

If you would like to sponsor James, please visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/james-housden2 and to find out more about the Far East Prisoners of War visit www.cofepow.org.uk.