FUNDRAISING NEWS: Hospice group lands HBOS deal

Dominic Wood

Help the Hospices has beaten Barnardo's and Mencap & Enable Scotland to win the HBOS Foundation's £1m challenge.

The victory represents the charity's second £1m-plus corporate partnership for this year, as it has also been chosen as Tesco's charity of the year.

Promotional videos submitted by each of the three charities were screened in HBOS branches on a television link and staff voted for their preference through an online and telephone poll. The two runner-up charities will receive £50,000 and a three-way share of any money raised above the £1m target.

HBOS whittled the numbers down to three from a long-list of charities it has previously funded. Last year's winner, Macmillan Cancer Relief, received £1.2m.

Help the Hospices has an annual income of £3.5m, but this is expected to more than double this year thanks to the Tesco and HBOS deals. David Burland, head of fundraising, said: "We expect Tesco will raise around £3m, with £2m from staff fundraising to go to local hospices, and £1m from cause-related marketing to fund services such as training, grants, lobbying, and support for carers.

"We are delighted these campaigns are bringing in much-needed extra funds to support the work of hospices throughout the UK," he added. "But people underestimate the size of the hospice movement and there is a long way to go."

Burland believes his charity won the HBOS vote because of "the respect and popularity of local hospices around the UK".

HBOS, which owns Halifax, Bank of Scotland, Birmingham Midshires, Clerical Medical, Insight Investment and Intelligent Finance, will match each £1 of the first £500,000 raised by its 70,000 staff over the next 12 months.

Fundraising activities will include marathon runs, dress-down days and raffles to attend Euro 2004 and the Olympic Games.

The charity said it had surpassed the £750,000 target set for last year's corporate partnership with Lloyds TSB.

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