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Supporters changing lives

How can raising money for one Charity bring your diverse workforce together?

Dunelm Mill

In just one day, Dunelm’s 8,500 staff and 138 stores raised £38,000 for Barnardo’s. Ryan Forrest, Marketing Assistant at the major British-based homeware company, says it’s important to organise fun company-wide events and then give staff ownership of their fundraising.

Making fundraising events accessible for all of your staff empowers everyone to get involved.

That’s what we do every October at our “Friends and Family Day” in our 138 stores across the UK, to raise money for our new Charity of the Year Partner. Fundraising is the primary aim of the day but we also offer staff, and five of their family or friends, a 25% discount on stock –so there’s a business benefit too. Every October, staff look forward to buying the things they want whilst raising money for Charity.

All our staff are invited, those from the stores as well as from our Head Office in Leicester, our customer service centre in Manchester and our distribution centre in Stoke-on-Trent. Each has their own Charity Champion, a member of staff who organises fundraising activity for their team. They spread the word about the event, and organise fundraising activities.

Dunelm Mill Staff Day

Inspiring creativity

Barnardo’s is our current Charity Partner and we worked with them to put together a Charity Champion fundraising pack for the October event. Each store did different things, from bake sales to bed-making competitions. Giving staff the freedom to decide what they wanted to do helped them take ownership of the event.

We find that having a dressing-up theme can help get everyone involved, from drivers to Head Office staff. The theme for this event was “Go Green” (Barnardo’s corporate colour) so we had lots of Shreks and Hulks. Many staff dressed up to help with bucket collections or running raffles.

We raised £38,000 for Barnardo’s, which was fantastic. Dunelm has a policy of match-funding staff fundraising so we’ve now raised £76,000 for the Charity. Our target for the year’s Partnership, which started in October, is £100,000 – so we are doing brilliantly!

Area Managers get quite competitive when it comes to raising money for Charity and we are more than happy with that! It helps to promote team work and ensures that staff gets to know more about our Charity Partner.

Dunelm Mill3

Staying focused

One of the reasons why our Head Office Charity Committee chose Barnardo’s was due to the Charity’s excellent fundraising ideas. We find that national events such as the “Family and Friends Day” work well alongside individual opportunities such as parachute jumps, marathons and cycling events, which Barnardo’s offer.

Focusing our efforts on one Charity Partner, rather than several, also helps get staff from different areas on board. We can do more as a company if we work with a national charity which works in many local communities. Staying ambitious, proactive and focused unites staff in their Charity fundraising."

What do you think? Are there any other ways to bring your diverse workforce together to raise money for a Charity Partner? We’d love to hear your thoughts. Do get in touch to let us know.

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