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British Heart Foundation and Lloyds Banking Group

By Sophie Hudson, Third Sector, 14 September 2010

British Heart Foundation

British Heart Foundation

The charity's record-breaking partnership with the high-street bank

When Lloyds Banking Group announced it was to extend its partnership with the British Heart Foundation to the end of 2010, the charity officially became the bank's longest-lasting charity of the year, clocking up two and a half years.

The arrangement began in July 2008, when a fundraising target of £2m was set. Lloyds, which has more than 120,000 employees, hit the target in January this year.

When the bank decided in August to extend the partnership to the end of the year, a new target of £3m was set. The £2.7m mark has already been passed.

Richard Cooper, head of corporate responsibility at Lloyds, says that giving the BHF a few months to prepare for the partnership was a good idea.

"It meant that from day one we had a fundraising calendar drawn up and could get straight down to raising money," he says.

Jeneen Thomsen, relationship manager for the Lloyds partnership at the BHF, says it was important to set up a bespoke team at the charity to manage such a big partnership and keep everyone focused.

"It's a huge organisation, so we've had to make sure that we come up with fundraising ideas that will get everyone involved, from call centre staff to office staff to branch staff," she says.

Because of the duration of the partnership, it has also been important to keep people motivated.

Thomsen says one of the ways this was done was by sending case studies to staff about people who have suffered from heart disease.

Both parties have benefited from the union - the BHF through the impressive level of fundraising, and Lloyds through a number of health benefits it has brought to its employees, such as blood pressure tests and questionnaires about lifestyle.

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