News 20/08/2020

Miles for COVID Initiative

The new dispersed working environment has thrown up a range of challenges for many companies. How do you foster teamwork remotely? How do you help your employees stay fit and healthy? How do you counter potential mental health issues? And at a time when it is much needed, how do you replace in-person fundraising with virtual activities?

Never one to shy away from a challenge, in May G-Research launched a new scheme for its employees that went some way to addressing all of these issues: Miles for Money.

Miles for Money was a remote challenge where G-Research pledged £2 for every mile cycled and £5 for every mile walked or ran over the course of six weeks in June and July. This was tracked through Strava and, in true G-Research fashion, came with a Tableau dashboard which allowed colleagues to see the total funds they were raising, let different teams compete against each other, and generally encouraged people to raise as much money as possible.

For a company where sports clubs are, in normal times, a key feature in the social landscape, this provided a great excuse for colleagues to get outside and do something that was going to benefit them as well as raise money for some great causes. Plus there was a dose of healthy competition at the top of the leaderboard as some very committed employees sought to grab the top spot (with the crown ultimately going to Joff Verby, who clocked up 2,457 miles on his bike, with his longest single ride coming in at 195.8 miles).

As with much of our fundraising, we asked our employees to nominate the beneficiaries of the money raised. This grassroots approach allows us to support a range of different charities, as well as offering our colleagues the chance to highlight particular interests of theirs and ensure we are working on causes that matter to our team.

Ultimately, over a third of the firm took part and a whopping £162,000 was raised, split between eleven different nominated charities (see below for full details). Mark Burnett, head of our Technology Innovation Group, recognised the range of benefits the scheme has had – both societal and personal:

“This has been a great way to enable everyone to contribute to CSR in a way that really contributes to their own wellbeing as well – and perhaps even, in being made healthier through more walking, running and cycling makes us more resilient to viruses in general. I have been on more runs and cycles rides than I would have otherwise and found it do be a great way to clear the head, think through a problem, and break up the day.”

Charities supported through Miles for Money

Resurgo Spear

The Spear Programme helps young people facing disadvantage into work or education. We equip them with confidence, motivation and the vital skills they need to succeed in long-term employment.

CALM

The Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) is leading a movement against suicide. Every week 125 people in the UK take their own lives. And 75% of all UK suicides are male. CALM exists to change this. Join the campaign to take a stand against suicide.

Euston Foodbank

Euston Foodbank, based close to G-Research’s offices, provides nutritionally-balanced emergency food and support to local people who are referred to them in crisis. They are part of a nationwide network of foodbanks, supported by the Trussell Trust.

St John Ambulance

As the nation’s leading first aid charity, St John Ambulance offers training courses, advice, volunteering opportunities, event support, products and more.

Reef-World Foundation – Green Fins

Green Fins, a public-private initiative of the United Nations Environment Programme and Reef-World, provides the only internationally recognised code of conduct used to reduce the environmental impact of the diving and snorkelling industry. 

Building Malawi

We are a small, UK based charity committed to improving opportunities for children in Malawi. Building Malawi has successfully built two schools and four libraries in Lilongwe, Malawi and, having bought a 22 acre site in the city, is now working to develop Lingadzi Academy – the largest sports complex in the country. 

SOS Children’s Villages International

When a child’s world is turned upside down by the loss of a parent, SOS Children’s Villages UK works to give them a home and a family with siblings and a trained SOS parent. Their emergency work also provides life-saving support to children and families coping with conflict and disaster and they advocate for children’s rights internationally.

RNLI Lifeboats

RNLI’s volunteer lifeboat crews provide a 24-hour rescue service in the UK and Ireland, and our seasonal lifeguards look after people on busy beaches. Our Flood Rescue Team helps those affected by flooding.

RNLI crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives since 1824 but we’re more than a rescue service. We influence, supervise and educate people too. Our Community Safety teams explain the risks and share safety knowledge with anyone going out to sea or to the coast. And our international teams work with like-minded organisations to help tackle drowning in communities at risk all around the world.

Katharine House Hospice

Katharine House provides specialist palliative care for adults with life-limiting conditions across North Oxfordshire, South Northamptonshire and South Warwickshire.

Northampton Hope Centre

Hope is a progressive anti-poverty charity that works to improve the lives of anyone affected by poverty, especially homelessness; through services, training, campaigning and advocacy.

Diabetes UK

Diabetes UK is the leading charity for people living with diabetes in the UK. Our vision is a world where diabetes can do no harm.

 

For more on how we’re looking to help in the fight against COVID-19, check out our other initiatives and actions:

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