‘Don’t send a card, address a problem.’
As part of the ‘Goldfish Gives Back’ programme we help local charities and community groups. Charities get discounted services, we give financial donations each year, provide sponsorship to local events, schools, sports teams and provide any assistant required to good initiatives. One of the main charities that we have given to long-term is the Simon Community.
Every year since the company was founded (in 2010) we have given financial donations. Last year we took part in their Christmas campaign called House of Card and will do so again this year. It is a great initiative that we urge all organisations to get involved in. The premise is simple: instead of buying Christmas cards, donate the money you would have spent (cost of cards, stamps, staff time to spent sending them out) and instead donate it to the Simon Community via House of Cards. It couldn’t be simpler.
Last night we attended an event held by the Simon Community in the incredible European headquarters of Microsoft (pictured). Some of the people that the Simon Community has helped turn their lives around were there. Their stories of the violence they endured on the streets were horrific. Homeless could and does happen to anyone.
Most people’s image of the Simon Community is the outreach work they do on the streets helping rough sleepers. This continues to be an incredible part of their work. The reason that people are most familiar with this aspect of their work is that it is the most visible part. However, a great deal of work is undertaken behind the scenes.
Simon’s CEO Sam McGuinness talked about these aspects last night. For instance, the Simon Community employs 29 nurses. Their medical staff operate a rehab centre in Usher’s Island in the centre of Dublin that house over a thousand people last year. That is incredible.
A big aspect of their work, which a lot people are unaware of, is prevention. That is, preventing homelessness. Sam said that last year the organisation help prevent 1,000 people becoming homeless. So instead of waiting until it is too late, and people are already homeless, the Simon Community are proactively working to prevent homelessness.
Look at the figures in the infographic at the top. It hits home how much they do. 6,285 people helped. Almost 355,000 hot meals. And lots, lots more. Incredible figures.
They need our help to continue to be able to offer these incredible services.
If you are connected to charity or have an initiative that you would like to refer to the ‘Goldfish Gives Back’ scheme them please call us on 019081999.