Katie's Diary

ubu Christmas - Goodwill and Giving

7th December 2012

Christmas is a great time to recognise the work that is done throughout the year by wonderful organisations whose spirit and values align with our own. It is also the season of goodwill and giving; whether exchanging gifts with our loved ones or making a selfless gesture to someone we’ve never met.

Throughout December ubu is making donations every day to a different nominated charity. The charities have been selected by our Customer Service Managers and each represents a cause that is important to ubu and the people we serve.

This process has already begun and so far we have made donations to 4 fantastic charities this week, with a fifth being given today.

On Monday a team from Selby went to ‘Martin House Children’s Hospice’ - The aim of Martin House is to provide family led care for children with life-threatening and life-limiting illnesses. They receive no government funding and so need the support of companies and individuals to make donations and organise fundraising events throughout the year to make their essential work possible. Their role is to ensure that in everything they do, they place the family at the centre and value each member of the family as individuals with their own needs. They take referrals from across the Yorkshire region and currently have 15 beds, 9 of which are for younger children with families and 6 for teenagers and other young people.

ubu representatives from Newcastle made a donation to ‘The People’s Kitchen’, a project which provides support to the city’s homeless individuals. Upon receiving the cheque from ubu, Bob Eldridge (Chairman of Trustees) said; “We are a safety net for the homeless within the city and are open every weekend when other professionals are not available, where we sign post our friends to our professional partners in line with the “your future” project. We are grateful to ubu for the gift that you have donated and for your support.” Much like Martin House, The People’s Kitchen does not receive any state funding and as founder Alison Kaye says “We rely entirely on the goodwill of individuals, business and community organisations to fund our essential services. In the current economic climate, charities are experiencing increased financial hardship. Without your help, our services may need to be restricted at the very time our friends need us the most.”

Another charity who have already received their donation is ‘Zoe’s Place’ – who run the only “baby specific” hospices in the UK, “affording each individual respect and dignity regardless of gender, race, culture, religious beliefs or disability”. They can accommodate up to six infants at any one time, whilst also providing facilities for the families if these are needed. They receive little Government funding and therefore rely heavily on charitable donations and public fundraising to achieve the £2.5 million they need to run the hospice every year.

The latest donation we made was to ‘Walking With’, “a project of Wallsend Churches Working Together which seeks to support asylum seekers and refugees in the North Tyneside area.”  They offer services such as providing food, helping with the completion of complex housing forms, legal help and the provision of small hardship grants to assist with personal expenses. This is a volunteer based organisation that relies solely on charitable donations and the assistance of those willing to give their time to make their work possible.

Today’s charity is ‘700 Club’, a Darlington based organisation that provides temporary accommodation and support services to vulnerable individuals, families and couples who are homeless, at risk of becoming homeless and/or are in condition of need, hardship or distress. This is very much a community based project whose values are “openness, honesty, accountability and consistency”. They offer supported hostel accommodation, advice and counselling, out of hours emergency food and skills based employment training. All of this is made possible by a strong network of volunteers and by the funding it receives through charitable donations. 

Over the next two weeks leading up to 21st December we will be sending ubu representatives to make donations to the following:

St Leonard’s Hospice in York

St Michael’s Hospice in Harrogate

St Gemma’s and Make a Wish in Leeds

Wigan and Leigh Hospice in Wigan

Donna’s Dream House in Blackpool

Rainbow Family Trust in Manchester

St Barnabas Hospice in Lincoln

Billy’s House in Nottingham

Marie Curie in Spalding

Children’s Society in Sheffield

The full details of each charity, plus the stories from the day will be added to the website so keep watching for updates on all of these fantastic organisations. 

Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year!

ubu Christmas - Goodwill and Giving

 I decide what matters to me. ubu help and teach me to make my future happen 

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