4 July 2013, by Jenny Mulholland
On 1st June Softwire held its inaugural Charity Saturday. This brilliant idea was dreamt up by one of our directors, Dan, who was one of twenty-five Softwire employees who gave up their Saturday to work for free for charity.
This year we’ve been raising money for two charities: SCI, who provide cost-effective treatment to eradicate debilitating parasites in the world’s poorest countries, and Ashanti Development, through whom we plan to sponsor a village in Ghana, starting by providing household latrines and basic sanitation. So far Softwirians have organised various fund-raising (and morale-raising!) events such as a pub quiz and a comedy night, which have got our charitable fundraising off to a great start.
The great thing about Charity Saturday, however, was that just by doing a normal day’s work, we could raise thousands of pounds for charity, because Softwire donates all the money we earned. So no need for 117-mile slogs from Bristol to London, or scary throwing ourselves out of planes; we just spend an extra day doing the jobs that we enjoy, and the charities benefit!
On the day itself everyone turned up bright and early (ok, rolled in at their usual hour…) and got down to business. Our extra day in the office was made much more enjoyable both by Dan, whose role in the process was to buy lunch and generally wait on us hand and foot (although any overly taxing requests incurred an additional fee going to the charities), and Zoe, who kindly kept us well-supplied with pastries and chocolates during the day. Personally, I found Charity Saturday provided extra motivation to be productive – since I was giving up my weekend, then I had better make it worthwhile!
Once we’d done our day’s hard work, some of us also went to dinner at the nearby Shaolin Temple restaurant, where the merriment and charitable spirit continued into the evening.
Overall, we raised around £15 000 for Ashanti and SCI – a fantastic result!