Society sponsorships and donations of locally-based community projects, teams, people, and charities enables us to consistently give back to the communities we serve – it’s one of the major factors that make building societies so different to banks.
Many of these come about as one-off requests for help, but occasionally they turn into long-term relationships. An example of this is our association with the Concordia Theatre in Hinckley, who we have supported for over 10 years. The Society’s sponsorship of their shows helps give local thespians the opportunity to showcase their talents, which in turn are enjoyed and supported by many local people.
Similarly, we have been supporting Hinckley Rugby Club for more than a decade and that support continued this year, and we were lucky enough to win a lunch table at one of their big matches!
Keen to champion the importance of mental health to our members and staff, the Society has started working with local mental health charity LAMP taking the reigns as lead sponsor of their Around the World 5K challenge in May 2021. This challenge saw 50 society staff (joined by 1,450 other local and worldwide supporters) sign up to get active and increase awareness of the charity and its cause, and as a result raised over £7,000 which will help LAMP to continue to offer their services to nearby people in need of assistance.
In 2021, we are supporting Baby Loss Awareness Week and donating £100 to the Baby Loss Awareness Week Alliance. Pregnancy and baby loss is unfortunately very common, and this is a cause close to the hearts our staff. Baby loss can cause deep grief and physical and emotional pain for all involved so we are pleased to be able to raise awareness of this difficult subject.
The Society receives requests to support various causes all year round, whether that be £100 to help put on a charity golf day for local cancer charity Prostaid or providing funding to help spread a little cheer to isolated people at Christmas, we help where we can. In recent months we have made donations of over £4,000 to local causes who got in touch and asked for our support.
Our members continually tell us they share our love for charitable giving. As part of our Annual General Meeting (AGM), we turn members’ votes into a charitable donation. This year’s votes saw us donate £2,000 to both Hinckley and Rugby Foodbanks.
Adi Robinson, Service Delivery Manager for Rugby Foodbank said:
“On behalf of the clients we serve every week, and those who will need us in the coming weeks and months as the impact of Covid-19 is felt by many more, I’d like to say thank you. Financial donations like these ensure that we can plan and prepare to continue to serve those most in need in our community.”
We offer our financial backing to community projects taking place in our heartlands too. This year we have committed to helping Broughton Alive put on a summer festival, paid for tickets for 6 children and their carers to attend a Circus Starr show in Nuneaton, and sponsored Hinckley BID’s Summer of Fun, providing free events for local families to enjoy throughout the summer holidays.
These traditional means of support will always be welcome at the Society, however we are continually looking for new ways to reach out to our local communities. This year the Society’s chief executive, Colin Fyfe, answered public questions on all thing financial on local radio station Fosse107 for the weekly sponsored Money Matters episodes.
The society also put their money where their mouth is in January 2021, giving listeners the chance to win big in their competition Pay your Bills hosted by the station. With daily prizes of up to £500 over four weeks, HRBS were able to help many local residents who had been hit in the pocket as a result of lockdown measures.
In support of the commitment made by the Society our people make it their business to do their bit too, by organising and supporting fundraising for local and national charities every year.
Society staff regularly make suggestions for charities we can support and always take on the challenge of fundraising with enthusiasm and imagination. Whether we’re baking cakes, holding quizzes, or sleeping out to raise awareness and funds for homelessness, our teams are not shy about putting their best foot forward. With the culture of sharing running through every area of the Society this is sure to continue and build as our teams grow along with our business.