Charity leaders have cheered the region’s businesses and employees for coming together to support good causes and build morale in times of adversity.
Susanne Driffield of Muscular Dystrophy UK (MDUK) and Jethro Shearring of Dove House Hospice underlined the growing importance of fundraising events after meeting nearly 20 corporate teams at the annual charity golf day organised by Rollits LLP.
Susanne, MDUK’s Harrogate-based Regional Development Manager for the north of England and east Midlands, said fundraising is lifting spirits in the workplace as colleagues stick together to tackle the cost of living crisis.
Jethro, Senior Fundraiser (Trusts) for Dove House Hospice in Hull, said the events provide a financial lifeline for charities and are also vital in terms of raising awareness.
Rollits, which has offices in Hull and York, has been organising the event at Brough Golf Club for more than 30 years and confirmed that this year’s gathering raised over £3,500 from entry fees and sponsorship.
Susanne said: “We love to support the companies who hold fundraising days like this! People like to have some enjoyment alongside the fundraising element, especially when times are hard, and that’s why events like golf days are so good. They bring people together.
“When I started in this role four years ago there were lots of charity golf days almost every week, but since the pandemic things have scaled back a bit. The awareness we generate from the Rollits Golf Day is priceless. It would cost us a lot of money to buy the publicity from an event like this because we are not a well-known charity.
“There are about 168,000 charities in England and Wales now and it’s growing all the time because there are just so many causes. Having our banner here, encouraging people to ask about what we do, is massive for us.”
Jethro added: “This is the 30th year of support by Rollits for the Hospice and when you get that long-standing, continuous backing it safeguards the core services and helps us develop and grow.
“The funding that we get from the government is a very small percentage of what we need and would cover about 40 days running costs, so we are completely reliant on the generosity of the community to keep providing the care that we do.
“These events bring in money and also help to raise awareness and educate people about what we do. There are still some who think we are part of the NHS or a charity shop so engagement is important.”
Competitors at the golf day included Hull-based nationwide operators MKM and Rix Group, tech businesses Diony, The One Point and Springfield Solutions and Flanagan James and PPH Commercial from the property sector.
Rory Clarke, Managing Director of Rix Group, said: “It’s good to be associated with an event like this. We have put in a team for the last few golf days because we do a lot of work with Rollits and we support each other. Charities are dependent on organisations and individuals supporting them to deliver the level of service that they do and which we badly need in our communities.”
Roger Cameron of chartered accountants Cameron Ferriby & Co said: “I’ve played at this golf day since the mid-1990s and we entered a team from the early 2000s. It’s giving something back to the charitable organisations and at the same time being able to enjoy the company of the other guests.”
David Kilburn, co-founder of MKM, added: “We have entered a team in this for a few years. Rollits have always done a lot for charity and we see ourselves as part of the community, helping to support various causes.”
The Victory Leisure Homes team of James Doyle, Martin Boyers, Richard Gilliot and Lee Blanchard lived up to their name by winning the competition. The next Rollits’ charity golf day is provisionally booked for Thursday, 4th July 2024 at Brough Golf Course.
Richard Field, Senior Partner at Rollits, said: “Over the years we have raised over £150,000 from our golf day and that is all down to the generosity of the participants and the companies and organisations who sponsor holes and prizes.
“It’s clear from the feedback that everybody enjoys the day but the biggest motivation for taking part is to support Muscular Dystrophy UK and Dove House Hospice, and we are very grateful to them for that.”