Center Parcs won the award for Best Scheme to Encourage Staff Fundraising at the 2019 Better Society Awards.
The short break provider, which has a popular resort at nearby Woburn Forest in Bedfordshire on the outskirts of Milton Keynes, collected the accolade at the recent awards ceremony, held at the London Marriott Hotel in Grosvenor Square and hosted by comedian Kerry Godliman.
Now in its fifth year, the Better Society Awards recognise the efforts that commercial organisations make to create a better society, with 25 categories covering areas including community work, fundraising, sustainability, charity partnerships and equality.
Since June 2016 Center Parcs has been partnered with Together for Short Lives, the UK charity that speaks out for children and young people who have life-limiting conditions, raising awareness and funds for the UK’s 54 children’s hospices that deliver lifeline care and support to children and their families.
Whilst the corporate partnership is with Together for Short Lives, each Center Parcs village and Head Office is linked with their local children’s hospice, meaning that the partnership has local and national impact. Each site is responsible for organising and running their own fundraising activities and work closely with their partner hospices. This has been a significant factor in the success of the partnership, which has so far raised more than £700,000.
The Better Society Awards judges commented “Clearly a lot of effort and dedication went into this project, which was targeted and provided concrete results to the charity.”
Martin Dalby, Center Parcs CEO said: “We are a successful business and it has always been important to us that we give something back, through our charity partnerships. I’m absolutely delighted that we’ve won this award, as it’s a real testament to our staff who have really got behind our partnership with Together for Short Lives. Quality family time is what Center Parcs is all about and this
As well as fundraising, Center Parcs staff also have the opportunity to volunteer at their local children’s hospices. Several groups have been to their local hospices to lend support in different ways, for example: groups going to hospices to help with housekeeping, a group from Sherwood Forest went to Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice to transform a disused garden area into an accessible ‘fairy’ garden and a team from Longleat Forest went to Charlton Farm (Children's Hospice South West) to run a day of activities.