Belfast Telegraph

How businesses can help charity raise funds

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By Morag Chambers, Cancer Focus NI

As we approach the busiest season of the year - battling to beat deadlines ahead of the holidays and finding a few hours for Christmas get-togethers and shopping means that time is short for most of us.

Charities are no different, but these are the weeks when more volunteers than ever are needed. Finding people with time on their hands is a challenge which is why Cancer Focus Northern Ireland is appealing to local businesses to set aside time for team members to take part in vital fundraising.

According to Business in the Community, around 70% of FTSE 100 companies and 20% of SMEs now offer opportunities to volunteer to their staff.

Our need for volunteers is urgent. Many businesses and organisations are willing to let us hold collections and events on their premises, but we just don't have enough people to do the work. We are under serious pressure.

Up to 250 volunteers are needed to help with street collections and bag packs and we are calling out to local businesses to spare members of their teams for a few hours to help us raise funds that are so crucial for the services we provide to families living with a cancer diagnosis.

And the money raised will make a huge difference to the families that Cancer Focus NI works with.

In fact, £15 will pay for someone affected by cancer to attend a creative therapy session, £25 will pay for a counselling session for someone with cancer, and £100 will pay for six weeks support for a bereaved child.

We are a local cancer charity and we need to raise almost £4m each year, mostly from donations from the public, who are very generous.

All the money raised is spent in Northern Ireland on local cancer research, support and care services, cancer prevention work in schools and workplaces, and campaigning.

Our volunteers always tell us they get a feel good feeling, knowing they are helping others - and what better time of the year to do that than at Christmas.

You can choose from events in Bangor for festive bag packing at M&S in Bloomfield.

There are opportunities to be an elf helping at our Santa's Grotto in Lisburn or take part in our annual gift wrap and collect in Victoria Square shopping centre in Belfast.

In Ballymena we need people to join the Cancer Focus NI fundraising group for their annual street collection.

There are plenty of opportunities for businesses from across Northern Ireland to get involved and make a lasting difference to the lives of local families dealing with cancer.

We urgently need your help - as we really can't do it without you!

  • For more information contact Morag on 9066 3281 or at morag chambers@cancerfocusni.org to choose a date and venue to collect

Belfast Telegraph

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