"Were hoping that by demonstrating just how much of a difference these funds can make to us, that more businesses will sign up to do the same."
Local food manufacturer Wrights Food Group has championed a carrier bag fundraiser which has generated thousands for local palliative care charity, Douglas Macmillan Hospice.
As the only retailer in the North West to raise money for the charity through carrier bag sales, Wrights Food Group has raised almost £8k since 2016 through a carrier bag charge in each of its 15 stores, bringing the company’s 11-year total income generation for the charity to £35,919.
The carrier bag partnership has been so successful, Dougie Mac is now looking to encourage more local retailers to take part.
Dougie Mac business and community fundraiser Lauren Beresford, said: “Wrights Food Group has been a long term partner of our charity since 2009 with funds raised reaching just under £36k – money which for example, would cover the cost of almost 300 patients being visited at home by a specialist nurse, 360 outpatient appointments or pain relief for around 2,000 patients.
“The difficult times being faced by all charities mean even the simplest of fundraising acts can make a huge difference to our income and services. The £7,600 that Wrights stores have raised through sales of plastic and paper carrier bags is itself enough to cover the cost of 56 home visits by our nursing team.
“We’re hoping that by demonstrating just how much of a difference these funds can make to us, that more businesses will sign up to do the same.”
Wrights Food Group operates with a workforce of 600 across two sites in Crewe and its 15 high street stores, located across Stoke-on-Trent and North Staffordshire, specialise in local and regional favourites including the Staffordshire Lobby and the traditional meat and potato pie and seasonal specialities such as Granny Wright’s own recipe hot cross buns.
Since first supporting Dougie Mac in 2009, the company has raised just under £36k through staff fundraisers, supporting the charity’s annual ball, provision of auction prizes, product supply and in-store collection tins.
Wrights Food Group’s retail multi-site operations manager, Julie Brereton, said: “Corporate responsibility is very important to us and where we can give back and support our local community we will.
“The work of Dougie Mac in delivering such important end of life care for so many local people means it’s a charity which is close to all of our hearts and it was an immediate ‘yes’ when we were asked to donate income from carrier bag sales to the hospice. Hearing just how valuable those funds have been is highly motivating for our team and we’d certainly encourage other retailers to donate their carrier bag income to this very worthy cause.”
Lauren added: “It takes £13million per year to run our hospice and provide the resources and services such as day therapy, specialised nursing and a wide range of therapeutic activities. We’re so delighted that Wrights continues to champion our carrier bag initiative and continue what has been over a decade of support.
“We hope that their work inspires other businesses and retailers to get involved – in whatever way – and help us make such a very real difference to the lives of local people living with terminal illness.”