Teva’s Medical Information team in Harlow, Essex, wanted to give something back to the community – and growing homelessness in local areas was a particular concern.
So, they organised a collection at their offices in October, placing boxes around the building, emailing colleagues and leaving flyers in the staff canteen.
“It was such a simple idea but it was very successful and it gained a lot of support,” said Lisa from Medical Information. “The whole team helped with getting the idea out there and sorting through all the donations”
“We didn’t know what to expect but the boxes just kept filling up. People were very generous and it was great to see new items, socks, toothpaste and other toiletries, as well as used clothing. We sometimes just throw away old clothing but items such as socks, boots, coats and jumpers can make a big difference.”
The collection was held for the charity Streets2Homes, which manages a day centre in Harlow that offers housing advice and help finding accommodation. It also provides other essential services such as training sessions, employment advice, health services, social contact, washing facilities, food and clothing.
Lisa added: “The staff at the charity was extremely grateful and overwhelmed with the huge volume of donations – which filled the back of a car! They said it would make a huge impact on people’s lives, especially with the colder weather approaching.”
While delivering the donations, the team met Bill, a volunteer co-ordinator who shared his story.
Lisa explained: “A year ago, Bill himself was homeless. He talked about the long road to getting a homeless person re-housed, with hurdles such as the benefits system, fewer social rented homes being available, finding landlords, finding work and having a fixed address. This makes finding the right support for people who are homeless, essential.”
Lisa said “Streets2Homes is a small charity but it has a huge impact on those that it helps. The charity sent a thank you letter to the team and we’d also like to say a big thank you to everyone at Teva who supported the collection.”
The team was so inspired that it’s now looking to organise a Teva ‘food donation event’ in the spring. So, watch this space.
You can learn more about the charity here: http://streets2homes.zohosites.eu