Aico in the Community – supporting charities and organisations during a difficult time
Understanding that charities currently need help more than ever, Aico have been supporting local charities and community organisations in multiple ways, helping to replenish some of the funds that have been lost due to fundraising events being cancelled during the current pandemic crisis.
The support began with the UK 2.6 Challenge. All Aico colleagues put their names forward to participate in the challenge, with over 60 members of staff taking part in various challenges, from sporting workouts and danceathons on Zoom to baking cakes! The efforts from colleagues raised £2,900 for ‘The Movement Centre’, a local charity dedicated to supporting children and their families with movement disabilities.
Aico are also working with the High Sheriff of Shropshire 2020/21, Mrs Dean Harris, and in support of their Charity of the Year ‘Everything Shropshire’, Aico have recently donated £5,000 to the Shropshire Domestic Abuse Service. Aware of the significant rise in domestic abuse cases reported during the Covid-19 lockdown, the donation will fund outdoor furniture and outdoor toys for residents and children at refuges to enjoy as well as other family essentials. Aico have also agreed for the RJAH Orthopaedic Hospital, Gobowen to use their old premises in Oswestry for free medical storage. This will enable the hospital to set up social distancing measures in their wards by using Aico’s facilities to store equipment not currently in use.
Every year, at Christmas time, all colleagues are given the opportunity to nominate a charity of their choice, maybe a charity close to their own hearts. Aico will then make a donation to those nominated charities. As a result of Covid-19 and realising the struggles charities are currently facing with fundraising, Aico brought forward the end of year donations to charities to help them now, at a time when they are most needed. Alderhey Children’s Hospital, Children with Cancer, Hope House, Severn Hospice and Nightingale House have all received early donations from the company.
As part of Aico’s ongoing support to the Electrical Industries Charity (EIC) they are working together to provide mental health awareness sessions alongside Aico’s award winning expert installer training via webinar. These sessions are for people within the electrical industry and are designed to give a clear understanding of what mental health is, how to challenge the stigma and provide a basic knowledge of some common mental health issues. Together with the EIC, the aim is to create a positive culture around mental health and be able to support and to reach out to those who need support during these difficult times.
Aico were approached by Shropshire Council’s Care and Engagement Lead to help fund an initiative to provide support to informal carers in Shropshire. Aico’s marketing team have been working with Welshpool Printing Group, WPG and have designed and printed 1,000 ‘Thank you to informal carers’ postcards, which Shropshire Council have sent out to homes across Shropshire, during National Carers Week. The postcard is to thank those caring for others behind the scenes, maybe in isolation, to let carers know they are doing a fantastic job and are not forgotten about. The postcard also gives support contact information details.
OsNosh CIC, Oswestry’s food recycle community kitchen, uses food donations, which would otherwise be wasted from local supermarkets to produce healthy meals for people within the community. Due to Covid-19, they have not been able to operate their weekly meal community events, so they have moved their focus to providing a home meal delivery service to families and those most vulnerable. The demand for meals has more than doubled in recent months and they now operate from a fully fitted catering kitchen in Oswestry. Aico colleagues have been volunteering their time, collecting surplus supermarket food, helping with meal preparation and the delivery of meals to people in Oswestry and the surrounding areas. Aico intends to continue its support, to enable OsNosh to achieve their goal of reducing food waste as well as supporting their community.
Aico have selected a variety of charities to support throughout 2020, however they encourage any charities or organisations looking for support or volunteering to get in touch with Community Liaison Jane Pritchard by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01691 664100.