Corporate Volunteer Award Nominees
Town Hall Dental, Halifax
The Town Hall Foundation is the charitable department of Town Hall Dental and is our way of giving back to the community who have supported us through our journey. The work of the Town Hall Foundation is divided into three key projects and funding is divided equally between each of them.
Teaching dental hygiene
The Foundation works with schools and funds visits by oral health educators to speak to children about the importance of good dental hygiene. With free kits for the children, it provides vital education on how to keep your teeth in the best condition, and hopes to prepare the next generation with the tools they need for better dental hygiene.
Their work in this sector also encompasses adults with learning disabilities
Providing essential dental care for those in need
The work of the Foundation goes to fund work with the homeless and vulnerably housed, as we have set up mobile dental clinics in Leeds and other areas of West Yorkshire. Many of the hundreds of people we work with require treatment that cannot be provided on the street and have no way of accessing such treatments due to their unfortunate circumstances.
The Town Hall Foundation pays for the treatment of these individuals. Raising more funds allows them to expand their reach and help more people.
Supporting other organisations
Town Hall Dental also support Focus 4 Hope and Overgate Hospice.
Focus 4 Hope:
Focus4Hope is a Brighouse based charity that helps the homeless and vulnerably housed across Yorkshire. Their work has included outreach, involving visits to those most at risk, providing essential care packages and fundraising. We have been able to support their cause by operating a mobile dental clinic, and donating food and clothes.
The Town Hall team recently visited Calais with their ‘mobile dental van’ that provided essential dental care to those impacted by the refugee crisis in partnership with Focus4Hope. They have two further trips planned for this year, in June and October, and are currently raising funds to build a bespoke dental van that can be used by dentists all across the country to help where it is most needed.
Overgate Hospice are an independent local charity aiming to provide the greatest quality of life to their patients. They do this by providing the highest standard of compassionate and evidence-based specialist palliative and end of life care for adults in Calderdale who have active, progressive, life-limiting illnesses.
Yorkshire Choice – Melanie Malcolm and Jo Maltby
Melanie and Jo wanted to raise the profile of and support charities in Yorkshire by hosting charity events.
Since making this decision, thousands of pounds have been raised from their well-known awards ceremony, conferences, online auctions, shopping events and charity lunches.
Yorkshire Choice recognises Yorkshires finest achievers, developing a public voting system that has given recognition to over 1200 nominees.
Martin House Hospice, The Danny Jones Defibrillator Fund, St Gemma’s Hospice and Bethany’s Smile and #helloymynameis have all benefitted from the efforts of Yorkshire Choice.
Chris Ponton, husband of Kate Grainger, says he is personally honoured to support Yorkshire Choice, as they named one of their awards after his wife in her memory, The Kate Grainger Award. #hellomynameis is now recognised globally.
Mel has two children, runs two other companies, Yorkshire Ladies Links and Bespoke Home Cinemas, and sits on a global board as a Director in the AV industry, travelling the world.
Jo has two children, is a well-known face across Yorkshire, she runs two businesses showcasing small businesses called Handpicked Wetherby and Handpicked Harrogate, and she hosts networking events.
Friends of Charlton Brook Chair – Michelle Dickinson
We are a small volunteer-led Friends of Group of six volunteers located in the North of Sheffield, and rely on volunteers supporting and attending our work days to keep Charlton Brook greenspace maintained. Michelle joined the group in October 2006 as fundraiser, taking over as Chair in April 2018 due to the loss of our previous chair, Sheila Constance.
She has raised over £150,000 for the group to enable it to desilt the dam and create a bespoke fishery, including providing disabled fishing pegs and access, install new pathways across the site, create a community garden, install a BMX track, new seating, litter and dog poo bins, and new under 5’s play equipment, and she regularly organises litter picks.
Michelle developed great relationships with the Environment Agency, Sheffield City Council and Viridor Credits, enabling the old dam to be brought back to life as a bespoke fishery.
Michelle worked collaboratively with Business in the Community, which brought over 300 employee volunteers onto the site over several years, bringing skills to the site to create the community garden. This included organising publicity with BBC Look North and BBC Radio Sheffield, risk assessments for participating volunteers, and arranging free donations (think Challenge Anneka) from local businesses to make the Give & Gain Days successful.
In 2016 Michelle organised a large-scale launch event to promote the great work undertaken on the site, along with more recently arranging environmentally friendly fishing sessions with a local fishing club. The latter were attended by young people from High Green (a deprived area of Sheffield) aged 8-16 years.
Michelle’s own development has included project management skills, event management skills, and being an effective oral and written communicator at all levels, from the CEOs of large, local corporate organisations to residents using the greenspace. Some of this collaboration work has been challenging at times, but Michelle is always professional, and this has developed her understanding of community issues and needs
Soroptimist International of Harrogate and District – Contact The Elderley
Soroptimist International of Harrogate and District has a long association with the charity Contact the Elderly. Contact the Elderly was set up by Trevor Lyttleton MBE in the early 1960s after he met an older woman in Marylebone who lived alone. Saddened by the realisation that she was just one of many older people living like this in the borough, Trevor decided to make a change and hosted his first tea party in March 1965.
This has since become a national charity with a simple concept – Sunday afternoon tea once a month with friends in someone’s home. It is an enjoyable way to help release weekend loneliness for those elderly people who live alone and miss social contact.
The Club first became involved in supporting Contact the Elderly in January 2002, following a conversation that Club member Elsie Johnston had with Mary Robinson, who at that time was Regional Development Officer for Contact the Elderly.
Initially the Club provided drivers to an existing group in Harrogate taking people to the tea parties (this is usually a group of four to eight people). Such was the success, the Club were able to start their own group known as Harrogate 2 group. The Club is committed to maintain its long association with Contact the Elderly. There are 16 drivers and 10 hostesses (not all Soroptimists). Elsie Johnston now coordinates the tea parties and there is a rota system, which is planned at the beginning of the year. Members and other volunteers are willing to give up their time on a Sunday afternoon once a month. This usually involves three drivers and one host. The drivers pick up the guests, and take them to and from their host’s for afternoon tea.
Since 2002 the Club has hosted 20 elderly guests. Elsie Johnston plays a pivotal role in making the initial contact when Contact the Elderly refers a new person. This involves assessing the person’s mobility and access needs. It is important that the guest can get into and out of a car. It is also important that hosts have good flat access and downstairs WC facilities. Elsie also finds out if there are any specific dietary needs. It is a pleasure getting to know the guests and very sad when some can no longer attend due to deteriorating health, (though Elsie tries to stay in touch), moving away to be with family or having died.
At the present time the Club are enjoying the company of seven guests. As well as tea parties, the Club organises summer and Christmas outings for the guests.
Club members living in Ripon also support the local Contact the Elderly Group there.
The feedback from the elderly guests is very positive. They like to catch up with each other, and enjoy the food offered and the usual goody bags of cakes they take away at the end of the tea party. The drivers and hosts gain a greater insight into the lives of the guests and, in some cases, can use their knowledge to help the guests with issues they are facing, as some club members either work or worked in other organisations, such as the local Citizens Advice Bureau, health or social services.
The Club is fortunate to have donations given by supporters of the group and this has helped to provide Christmas gifts and outings when necessary.
The Club intends to maintain its close working relationship with Contact the Elderly. Contact the Elderly sends regular news briefings. In 2012 the Club members involved received certificates to recognise their long service. It is important to the Club members that Contact with the Elderly does make a difference to the lives of our guests, and helps reduce loneliness and its impact on their health and well being.