All companies that enter into charity partnerships do so with a target in mind. The property management firm Bidwells is no different. The company is celebrating its 175th anniversary in 2014 through year-long fundraising partnerships with children's hospices in England and Scotland.
The unique quality of Bidwells' target is that it is individualised. Each of its 500 members of staff has been given the goal of raising £175 over the year through individual fundraising and organised events, amounting to an overall target of £87,500. "We hope we will blow that out of the water," says Tim Barratt, associate at Bidwells Scotland.
In England, the partnerships are with charities local to Bidwells' offices, such as East Anglia's Children's Hospices and the Pepper Foundation. But in Scotland, where Bidwells has four offices, the partnership is with the Children's Hospice Association Scotland, the only organisation in the country that provides hospice services for children and young people. According to Barratt, after years of "ad hoc fundraising", the firm undertook an internal consultation in preparation for its 175th anniversary and concluded that "a more coordinated and focused approach" was in order. That includes two days of volunteering on company time every year. "They are open to helping with opportunities we have available," says Criona Knight, corporate and events fundraiser at Chas.
Bidwells staff have been bucket collecting at Perth Racecourse and Morrisons supermarkets and will assist this year at the organisation's two hospices.