It’s that most wonderful time of the year again, a time to look back at all the amazing work achieved by the volunteers from the hospices and local community groups and businesses and see what has been achieved this year. During 2017, there were 25 collections up and down the country, from Carlisle to Bath, Lincoln to Chelmsford, and all the way to North Wales, with the volunteers collecting a an amazing 13,054 trees and raising more than a whopping £150,000!
But what happens to the trees we collect? As much as possible, the trees are chipped and recycled in multiple ways. For example, last year’s Bramhall collection were donated to a local farmer to be used as mulch. Another collection, in aid of St Kentigern Hospice, went towards protecting sand-dunes, helping to maintain the natural coastline. Of the money raised, an amazing £112,000 was donated directly to a wide range of national charities and hospices, including the Stroke Association and Alzheimer’s Society. £14,000 was donated to local groups including food banks, Scout and Cub Groups as well as charities supporting those with mental health issues, bereavement and homelessness. The money raised will be incredibly useful in helping these groups continue their vital work. We also invested £11,000 into JustHelping to allow us to not just continue our work but to expand our reach, helping us do more and help more in the years to come.
We are grateful to all the volunteers who help with each and every collection; they come from all walks of life and are at the heart of everything we do. Whether it’s delivering leaflets, collecting trees or even local businesses loaning vans; every small action helps us to achieve something greater, and the donations help support the causes which are important to our volunteers. The festive season is a time for community and togetherness, and how better to do this than to support local charity? In the words of one contributor, ‘this is a fantastic service; it allows us to give to charity, the tree to be recycled properly, and saves us a job taking it to the tip. Smiles all round!’
The collection last year was such a huge success, but we don’t want to rest on our laurels (or our wreaths of holly). Our goal is to for a nation-wide Christmas tree collection, and are looking for keen new volunteers to help us. So, if you’re interested in spreading some cheer this festive season in any way, big or small, please don’t please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.
Why not watch our overview of the Christmas tree collection 2017 here.