Each year the Nationwide Building Society offers their staff the opportunity to volunteer for a charity and this year Kingdom Housing Association was fortunate to be the charity of their choice.
Chief executive Bill Banks was approached by Alistair Berwick, housing finance manager, at the Nationwide Building Society, to ask if Kingdom would be willing to offer a day’s volunteering opportunity for four Nationwide staff.
Bill said: “We were happy to oblige and identified that we would benefit from having the 4 volunteers do some work within our Support and Care Services.”
Shona Laird, area manager support and care, liaised with Sharon Mankelow, account manager at Nationwide and it was agreed the volunteers would work at the Kennoway service to carry out some gardening, painting of the summerhouse and garden furniture, and power hosing the garden decking.
The two properties are within a shared living setting which accommodates five people with learning disabilities and a lady living in her own tenancy, all supported by Kingdom staff.
Shona said: “We all studied the weather forecast over that weekend with anticipation, willing for at least a ‘dry day’ and when the Monday morning arrived, the sun was splitting the sky, not a cloud to be seen.
“The four volunteers arrived bright and early full of energy, they were Alistair Berwick, Sharon Mankelow, Lesley-Ann Blyth and Lesley Steel.
“They all worked enthusiastically throughout the day painting, gardening and power hosing making huge progress with the gardens.”
Maureen Inch, senior support worker at Kingdom, provided a well deserved buffet lunch for everyone with cups of tea and biscuits throughout the day to top up the energy levels.
Sharon said: “Many thanks for letting us loose in your gardens, it was a great day and we are glad to have made a little difference to the gardens. All the staff were very welcoming and looked after us well. The buffet was a surprise and very much appreciated and the staff supporting the lady in the individual tenancy kept us going with biscuits and drinks. Please pass on our thanks to them all. The Kingdom goodie bags with boxes of chocolates were great.”
Shona added: “We would like to extend our thanks to the Nationwide Building Society for this initiative to allow staff a day away from work to carry out volunteering to charities and we are very grateful to Alistair, Sharon, Lesley-Ann and Lesley for choosing Kingdom Housing as their charity.
“We greatly appreciate their time and all their help, and the difference they made to the gardens, which the supported individuals enjoy immensely.”