Posted by Cherry Bushell on
Last week we were featured on Invisible Age, a brilliant BBC Radio 4 documentary series. Some of our our respite break beneficiaries plus our 90 year old volunteer courier were interviewed. For a listen Click here
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Posted by Cherry Bushell on

NBFA Assisting the Elderly is getting a makeover! Our friends at Quest Professional have set themselves the challenge of refurbishing our offices!  It's a win-win for both organizations.  NBFA Assisting the Elderly gets a great working environment for ourselves and our precious volunteers.  Students from Quest Professional get to really put some of their project management and team working skills into practice.  We believe in partnering with businesses and organizations in ways that are  mutually beneficial to both parties - but when budgets are tight (as they often are with charities) it means getting a little creative. So to start things off, we have a list of ways corporations and charities can partner to get things done.

4 ways corporations and charities can help one another get around tight budgets

  1. scratch that itch

    With just a little bit of brainstorming you can almost always find something that one party needs which the other can provide. If budgets are hampering forward movement on some of your projects striking an "I'll scratch your back, if you scratch mine" kind of deal is probably your best option. Which is exactly what happened with our charity makeover.

    Richard Morris from Quest Professional, came to us in search of internship and work opportunities for his students.  However, he only had to step into our office to discover an entirely different work opportunity we could offer his students.

    You see, we've always been a little embarrassed to invite people to our office. It hasn't seen a fresh coat of paint in years, the furniture (all donated free of charge), though functional, is a quite outdated and much too bulky for our small little office. The lighting's a bit harsh and everything just seemed, well, a little tired. Refurbishing the office has always been on the to-do list but its never quite made it into the budget. It was an itch that needed scratched.

    Richard, who just so happens to have interior design on his career CV, noticed that sad state of affairs in our office and offered us a deal. You give our students free reign to re-design and refurbish your office from scratch and we will refurbish your workspace for free. We quite liked the sound of that.

  2. Learn something new

    That is not to say that getting some extra training in while you're at it ever hurt anybody. Partnering with a business or charity offers a variety of surprising learning opportunities. We've already seen this in action with our charity makeover. On our part, learning how to maximize space and create an uplifting atmosphere in our workspace is definitely something we can take with us into the future. As a charity we need to make the best of everything we have; whether that's our budget, the amount of desk space we have, or our volunteer morale.

    For the students at Quest Professional they are getting a practical real-world application of their budgeting skills and problem-solve when things don't turn out as expected. It is often difficult for schools to provide real-world practice opportunities for students. As such, tutors are often left with creating as realistic scenarios as they can for their students to practice in. However, nothing quite beats the real thing.  Running this project meant the students at Quest Professional had to work with a non-existent budget and within the confines of the resources available to them, not only, on a short notice, but also, on a limited availability.

  3.  Expand our horizons

    Whenever you work with new people, not only do you learn about them, you also learn a bit about yourself. Every office has a different cultures or working dynamic and some are better than others. One office may have an excellent system for filing paperwork while another has always struggled in this area. Company cultures vary so widely from one organization to another that you should almost always find at least one that your partners excel in better than you. Exposing your business or charity to these new working styles is always a valuable eye opening experience. You may just find you've unwittingly found the solution to another itch that needed scratching!

  4. Networking

    As always, it's all about who you know. Networking is a crucial part of any organization's growth, whether they are for-profit or not. Partnering up for one small project always has the potential to snowball into a long-lasting relationship or providing the link to another organization who can help with a much larger endeavour than the first. The right contact can make all the difference!

So there you have it. 4 reasons that we are really happy to be working with Quest Professional! We'll be tagging everything with #MyCharityMakeover, so you can see the results. Follow our social media to follow the progress!

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NBFA Assisting the Elderly has a GUARANTEED PLACE in the 2015 Virgin Money London Marathon and we are really excited to be benefitting this year.  Competition for places gets tougher every year – so if you want to be part of this great event, please get in touch!

5 great reasons to get involved:

  1. It's a guaranteed place

    If you didn't get into the marathon this year there are still many ballots available through charity sponsors. We want runners, you want to run, everybody's happy.

  2. It's good for your health

    It's common knowledge that exercise is a great way to stay healthy but did you know that it also helps with your mental health as well? Running helps combat depression. Helping a charity, doing something nice for a friend and other forms of good-will are another way of improving your mental health. So by running for a charity your getting an two-for-one deal for your health! Exercise and good-will in one day, you will be grinning ear-to-ear by the end of it!

  3. It's good for your CV

    Employers are looking for more than just your education these days. Often employers want employees who demonstrate passion and initiative. What better way to show your talent than to do some valuable fundraising?

  4. You'll get valuable support

    Running for NBFA Assisting the Elderly is a great choice for a first-timer and you have our support all the way. Even if you're a veteran marathoner sometimes it's nice to have a little extra support.You'll make friends and influence people

    Along with all that extra support, you'll meet a lot of people through getting really involved in raising sponsorship.  Training in dark nights can be lonely, but fundraising never is!

    If we've got you convinced- please do apply to run for NBFA Assisting the Elderly. We have a spot open and are looking for a runner to fill it! Visit our sign up page Virgin Money London Marathon section asap for more info on how to apply!


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