This week, the 4Com Foundation will be continuing their support for local charity Ashley’s Birthday Bank by linking new business sales with charitable giving. Starting on 21st May, for every new business telephone system sold, the 4Com Foundation will provide a week’s grocery shop to a family supported by the charity.
Ashley’s Birthday Bank is a charity whose work is based in the Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch area. They provide services to families who find themselves going through a financially difficult time, or to those who have escaped from domestic violence, neglect or human trafficking. The crisis service side of the charity provides food shopping, baby equipment, nappies, baby milk, clothes and toiletries to local families. The charity works entirely on a voluntary basis and relies on support through fundraising and contributions from the community.
Anna Selby, Trustee at Ashley’s Birthday Bank, commented, “We receive referrals for local families daily, with food shops a common request. Recently, most of these referrals have been due to poverty; a parent unable to feed her children due to a high-utility bill, a grandmother who took in her grandchildren to avoid them going into care, and a mother who had been re-housed due to domestic violence but had no funds to fill the cupboards with food. Being able to provide these families with a weekly shop helps to ease the pressure slightly, knowing that both they and their children will have food to eat for the week.”
Ashley’s Birthday Bank was also 4Com’s 2017 Charity Partner. Last July, nearly 70 members of staff took on the Isle of Wight Challenge in which participants completed a circuit of the island by running, cycling and walking within 15 hours. This helped to raise £40,000 for the charity, which enabled them to action their “New Start” project; providing packages with various household items to families who have been re-housed.
Dean Cartledge, 4Com Director and Head of the 4Com Foundation explains how the idea came about “I saw a social media post about how they had provided a weekly shop to a local mother which got me thinking about how we could do more to help those in need. It’s all too easy to become blinkered during our day-to-day work, but linking our new business sales to making a difference in our community is a great way to help while giving everyone here at 4Com extra motivation to be at their best.”
The food shops are geared individually to each family, asking their likes and dislikes and adding baby milk, nappies and toddler foods where appropriate. The shops also have a menu sheet sent with them, which shows the parents how to cook simple, healthy foods. Anna stated “Some of the parents we provide food shops for are very young and have had no family support so have very little experience of cooking and budgeting. These menu sheets provide an easy to follow recipe, with the details of the ingredients and the cost per person, meaning that the menu can easily be re-ordered so that future food shops are kept to a budget.”
Charitable giving will be linked to new business sales for the week of the 21st – 25th May. Find out the number of grocery shops we achieve by checking our social media pages.