Many people, both employees and employers, want to do something to give back in the pandemic, but just don’t know what would be best. The current risk of infection mean in-person volunteering isn’t always possible, many people are in overwhelm unable to add additional responsibilities, and, frankly, many charities are struggling financially. Moss HR spoke to one charity to find out how organisations can still play their part.

Nicky Shepard, the CEO of Abbey People based in Cambridge said;

“This pandemic has been a long-haul, and it isn’t over yet. The first quarter is traditionally a quieter time for donations following the Christmas rush, and coupled with the added need from this new lockdown, charities are finding this year hard already.”

Here are Nicky’s top three ideas for how your organisation can help, whatever its size.

  1. Set up a matched ‘Give as you earn’ programme for your employees. If the business can double everything employees give, it will make a huge impact for charities – and payroll giving will reduce your employees’ tax bill too. Plus, monthly giving means charities can budget and plan better, making the biggest impact from every gift.
  2. Encourage your employees to fundraise for charities (and consider matching this). Although many activities are off for a while due to COVID restrictions, people are still allowed out for exercise. A company-wide walking / running / biking challenge could get people moving, improve employee engagement and can raise some much-needed funds at the same time. Alternatively, why not have a Zoom box instead of a swear box? If employees talk when on mute, a pet or small child walks in or they’re still in pyjamas, they have to donate a £1!
  3. Make a good old-fashioned donation. Unrestricted funds are hard to come by in the charity world – if you are able to make a donation (and ideally cover any fees) then the charity can use the funds to meet the greatest need right now. I don’t know a single charity that would turn down a donation right now.

[/vc_column_text][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][vc_separator][vc_column_text]Nicky adds,

“Do consider finding a local charity to partner with, some of these smaller organisations have fallen through the gaps of government support, and many have limited (or no) reserves to fall back on.”

Whatever you do, keep you and yours safe and well.

Nicky Shepard is CEO of Abbey People, a community charity fighting poverty, hunger and loneliness while making Abbey in Cambridge a better place to live. Amongst other things, Abbey People runs a regular Food Hub and delivers food parcels to those in need. To find out more visit

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