Business volunteers donate 2,796 hours to local charities in one day for ‘Be a Saint’ day

Local charities received a major boost on Thursday 16 March when 466 business volunteers from across Northern Ireland donated their time to lend a hand in a practical way for ‘Be a Saint Day’.

Organised by Business in the Community and Volunteer Now, and sponsored by SPAR, ‘Be a Saint Day’ is an annual day of volunteering, where employees from across the country roll up their sleeves and take part in practical volunteering. Activities included everything from helping to run charity shops for the day, to garden maintenance and painting.

More than 30 employers released staff for a day to help 41 local charities across Northern Ireland in areas including Antrim, Ballymena, Bangor, Belfast, Carrickfergus, Carryduff, Downpatrick, Drumahoe, Enniskillen, Greyabbey, Holywood, Larne, Maghera, Newtownards, Newry, Omagh and Whitehead.

Denise Cranston, Head of Communities, Business in the Community said:

“We are thrilled by the response for ‘Be a Saint Day’ this year. We had a total of 466 business volunteers dedicate their time for the day to help charities and good causes across the country. This equates to a staggering 2,796 hours or approximately 75 weeks’ worth of volunteering time donated in one day! That’s a fantastic result, and I’d like to take this opportunity to congratulate everyone that took part for this wonderful achievement.”

Bronagh Luke, Head of Corporate Marketing added: “We are delighted to support ‘Be a Saint Day’ once again this year. It’s a great way to get involved, and give something back to your local community. Each and every volunteer helped to make a difference by helping out with vital, practical tasks that the groups just simply don’t have the resource to undertake themselves. Their efforts have provided a much needed boost and everyone involved should be extremely proud. ”

Wendy Osborne OBE, Chief Executive of Volunteer Now said: “This day of voluntary action makes a tremendous contribution to many local organisations. It offers a great way for volunteers to make a difference in the community and to have fun at the same time. We are delighted more and more of our businesses as well as public bodies are encouraging their staff to take part.”

For more information, visit www.bitcni.org.uk or www.volunteernow.co.uk

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