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Wrapping up a milestone year of Cares Challenge Celebrations

22 December 2022 9:00

 | NI Water News

L-R Sara Venning CEO NI Water, Rebekah Barr Volunteering Manager Simon Community and NI Water volunteers

NI Water is wrapping up a milestone year of celebrations; and preparing for the next decade of one of the largest corporate volunteering schemes in the province.

In 10 outstanding years, NI Water has donated over 11,500 employee hours to help good causes throughout Northern Ireland. Supported by Business in the Community, NI Water has helped over 1,500 employees to volunteer their time through a wide range of volunteering activities.

Since 2012, NI Water has mobilised a team of different employees to take part in volunteering challenges each month, from painting residential care homes, to tree planting and conservation work.

As part of NI Water’s ‘Cares Challenge’ programme, activities are planned and set up in partnership with Business in the Community’s Cares Programme. The programme identifies organisations and charities within the local community who need a helping hand with physical tasks.

This has allowed NI Water staff to help a wide range of charities over the past 10 years including Southern Area Hospice, The National Trust, Welcome Organisation, Crosskennan Lane Animal Sanctuary and Foyle Hospice.

This Christmas, Cares Challenge will be assisting with the winter campaign at Simon Community.

L-R Sara Venning CEO NI Water, Kieran Harding Managing Director Business in the Community and Kirsten Hewitt Director of Homelessness Services Simon Community

Sara Venning, Chief Executive of NI Water, explained: “We are delighted to be helping the Simon Community as we begin a new decade of Cares Challenge. Our dedicated staff will continue to work alongside charities, schools and community groups to help provide that extra support. 

“These teams of handy helpers have undertaken everything from gardening, painting and maintenance to environmental and fundraising days.  It is often the extra support that these groups require to enhance their facilities, improve the lives of their members and operate their centres successfully.

“Volunteering has also proved to be a key part of our health and wellbeing toolkit.  Our teams gain so much from the experience, not only by helping the community, but also having the chance to spend time with colleagues from around the business that they might not otherwise have a chance to meet.”

Kieran Harding, Managing Director at Business in the Community added: NI Water has shown tremendous commitment to the local community through its decade-long involvement with the Cares Challenge. Employer-supported volunteering enables employees to engage with local communities, charities and community groups, to develop an understanding of their needs, and to pro-actively support the work they do. When employers offer opportunities for staff to volunteer it supports better wellbeing, develops skills, and improves employee engagement – creating a happier, healthier workforce.

“I’m delighted that, via the Cares programme, Business in the Community has been able to support NI Water to help local communities to thrive over the past decade.”


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