Wednesday, 1 December 2010

Charity begins at home

And ‘home’ for the working day is Breast Cancer Campaign. Our staff do things personally to support our charity on top of the day jobs, whether it is raising money through our own wear it pink activity, running marathons or other races or doing sponsored walks – we all do our bit.

I am also always impressed by a willingness to help other charities – and this week was an example. A friend has “adopted” two orphanages in Vilnius in Lithuania and asks for gifts of toys and warm clothes and donations. A friendly truck driver takes the donated goods over just before Christmas and she and her husband also go over and buy lots of fresh fruit and other treats (yes fresh fruit is a treat) for the children and ensure that everyone has a new toy and a big hug.

Colleagues here have rallied round with gifts of toys and warm children’s clothes. We also have quite a number of samples that we are sent and which we can’t use. We have filled five black bin liners which will soon be on their way to Vilnius. Really easy to do but we feel good about it.

On the same theme I was impressed with an initiative in London last week – Mitzvah Day. Mitzvah is Hebrew for a good deed. As I went into my local supermarket I was handed a leaflet and asked to add a few items to my trolley from the list and give them to the collector on the way out. This was to support a local shelter for the homeless. It was practical with things like soap and cleaning materials, shampoo, nappies and tissues, non-perishable foods and perhaps some nice biscuits as a treat. It was no effort and the cost was small but I felt good again – practical and effective and of course very dependent on all the volunteers who made it happen.

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