Trusting in BNS for Support

Good causes are continuing to benefit from a top telecom firm’s generosity after it renewed its commitment to run a charitable fund.

North East-based BNS Telecom started its fund in March last year and since then
has helped more than 20 local charities.

The company’s commitment is vital at a time when some businesses are cutting back due to the recession – and many voluntary organisations that rely on contributions are struggling to make ends meet.

The BNS Telecom Fund – run by a committee of BNS employees in conjunction with The Community Foundation – has already made 23 grants ranging from £250 to £4000.

Now additional funding has been agreed for the firm’s new financial year which starts this month.

Andrew Crawford, BNS marketing director, said: “BNS is part of the community and many of our workforce are part of the charitable network of voluntary organisations and groups that work within it.

“We want to give something back and are delighted to be able to renew our pledge to help at this time. So far we have given support to a wide variety of good causes ranging from a rescue team, community radio station and bowls club to Guides, schools and youth groups.

“As a company we have been both surprised and delighted at the level of commitment from staff. This has fostered a culture of involvement with the local community that extends beyond the committee to attending events held by groups which have received funding – it’s been a very positive experience from the company’s point of view.

“Now more than ever local charities need help and would urge other companies to get involved as we have done.”

Roger Braybrook, manager of Tynedale Citizens Advice Bureau, which received £500 towards advisers’ expenses, said: “Volunteer advisers are the key to our organisation’s work and we are lucky in having one of the largest teams of trained advisers.

“The credit crunch is having a significant impact on our work and we are seeing an increasing number of repossessions and clients in financial difficulties. The grant from BNS is of significant help in managing the expense.”

Another grateful recipient was the Northumberland Downs Syndrome Support Group which thanked BNS for the £4,000 contribution, raised through a combination of a grant from the fund and a company-wide staff fundraising effort.

Susan Cullingworth, service coordinator, said: “We would like to thank BNS – the plan is to spend the money on family activities and we are looking into the possibility of families having a weekend break.”