Coutts & Co has hit the challenging goal it set at the beginning of 2017 for its staff charity. After a busy year of fundraising events, Coutts staff raised £326,313 in 2017 for Coram, a charity that supports vulnerable children.
In celebration of the company’s 325th anniversary, Coutts set itself the ambitious goal of raising at least £325,000 for its staff charity in 2017. Coram was selected from a shortlist by staff vote, and announced as the staff charity in February 2017.
Coram offers direct, practical help and emotional support to vulnerable children, young people and their families. It does this through finding adoptive families for children in need of loving, permanent homes, helping traumatised children express their pain through art and music therapy and providing homeless outreach to young people.
They also offer help for parents to do the best they can for their children by providing support in a child’s early years or when parents find themselves overwhelmed by their own problems.
£325,000 is significantly more than Coutts staff have raised in the past, but they rose to the challenge by throwing themselves into a series of events throughout the year. Among the fund raising highlights were the following:
- A 325th anniversary baton relay held in September saw a baton visit all 15 of Coutts regional offices raising over £175,000 alone. Coutts staff walked, ran, cycled, skipped, jumped, hopped, punted, sailed, helicoptered, hula-hooped, drove in classic cars and tanks, and finally took a horse-drawn coach to deliver the baton to Coutts head office at 440 Strand.
- Over 100 Coutts staff also undertook the Yorkshire Three-Peaks Challenge in April, an arduous trek across the Pennine peaks of Pen-y-ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough. Participants finished the course in times ranging from eight and a half hours to 13 and a half hours, and raised nearly £84,000.
- A 24-hour music marathon, which has become something of a tradition for staff charity fund raising, generated £4,600 in November and was ‘headlined’ by comedian and musician Bill Bailey.
- Coutts staff participated in many more events over the year, including quiz nights, balls and parties, bake sales and sponsored sporting events. The London Business Partner team also held four quarterly events that raised £12,000 on their own.
- Coutts was able to announce the achievement of their goal, fittingly, at its annual Christmas party for staff children. Significantly, Coutts was able to achieve its goal in only 10 months.
Coutts chief executive Peter Flavel said: “I am delighted that we raised over £325,000 for our staff charity, Coram, in what was Coutts’ 325th year. We set ourselves a highly ambitious target and I am incredibly proud of all the staff who gave their time and money to help us get there. Coram is doing fantastic work to help the most vulnerable children in society and I am thrilled that Coutts has been able to contribute towards its work.
Coram will continue to be the Coutts staff charity for the remainder of 2018, and Coutts will look to build on this level of fundraising through more volunteering and engagement opportunities with Coram.
Coutts has a history of philanthropy going back to its earliest days. Angela Burdett-Coutts, the granddaughter of bank founder Thomas Coutts, became one of the most famous philanthropists of her time. She was influenced by her friend Charles Dickens to use her wealth to support the Ragged Schools project, a charity she supported to the end of her life.
Hailed in London as ‘the Queen of the Poor’, she later founded schools in Ireland and funded projects as far afield as South Africa and Australia.
Coutts continues this legacy through its own charitable activities. As well as the annual staff charity, the Coutts Foundation aims to support sustainable approaches to tackle the causes and consequences of poverty, focusing on the communities where Coutts has a presence.
At this time the core focus of the foundation is supporting women and girls in the UK by providing help and support for a range of organisations that are active in this area. This year, this included a £10,000 grant toward Coram. Previous staff charities have included Carers UK in 2016 and Magic Breakfast in 2015.
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