Posted on: March 21, 2023

Our Charitable Causes

*Content correct at the time of publishing and subject to change.

It all started with an invite to a charity golf day from a friend. The Charity was Swings and Smiles and they were raising funds for their centre in Thatcham. Their website states “Swings & Smiles offers support for disabled children and their families in a unique and accessible environment. Our services include respite, family play sessions, youth clubs, sibling support and outreach”.

They golf was enjoyable and the post golf hospitality was excellent. And then one of the parents stood up at gave a short talk on his family’s story, how Swings and Smiles help and what this means to them. The presentation was wonderful, emotional and was really designed to make people think. The presentation really affected me. What also came out of the presentation and feedback from other charities we sponsor is the lack of support from the Government.

So as a business we decided to do something about it and made a substantial donation to them in November 2019. And then Covid-19 came which severely affected Swings and Smiles ability to raise cash. So it was decided to donate a regular amount on a monthly basis so that they could budget on what to expect from us. And we have continued with this arrangement ever since.

Source: Newbury Today

And this relationship changed the way we looked at the distribution of company profit. Each year we look at the profit made and the cash accrued and then go through the process of dividend distributions, business projects/ reinvestment/ improvements as well as staff bonuses and pay rises. And we decided to add one other item to the agenda… We currently donate approximately 1% of our profit to charitable causes and the plan was to increase this to 2% from 2023. The housing market decline has slowed us up a bit, but we still hope to be close as we can be to the 2% mark by the end of 2023.

Other charitable causes we support

With this increased budget we decided to look for other charities we could get involved with. We have historically had an ad-hoc relationship with the Sue Ryder Duchess of Kent Hospice in Liebenrood Road, Reading and we decided to formalise this with a regular donation.

We were keen to have a diverse range of charities for financial support so in 2022 we added No5 to our list. No5 are a Young people’s counselling service that provide them with mental health support. Having experienced mental health issues in my family and being grateful to counselling services at times myself, I thought it would be time to give something back. Our donation to No5 covers 2 counselling sessions per month.

Source: Berkeley Foundation

And in pursuit of having a diverse range of causes we have decided to involve our customers in the process. The intention is to have a draw each November for a share of ten £100 donations to our clients designated charity or school. In order to enter the draw clients need to be an existing completed customer with Village Financial Services Ltd who is friends with us on Facebook at the time of the drawer. There are other terms and conditions and these can be found on our website

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