A Helping Hand with Handwash!

Sector: Business, Non-profit

Network Rail’s donation saves local charities’ money

At a glance

One of the things we love to do at Connect Reading is to help connect redundant or surplus resources through our Resource Xchange. When Reading UK CIC reached out during the pandemic to ask if we could help re-distribute 1,500 bottles of antibacterial hand wash, we were close at hand (wash)!

Connecting during Covid

We immediately contacted all our non-profit members to ask whether any of them needed soap. As you can imagine – at the height of the pandemic – the response was fairly huge.

Annie (Connect Reading’s Head of Comms & Events at the time) headed off in her car to meet a team from Network Rail and Interserve at Reading Railway Station. It took two estate car-fulls (including all the seats and foot-wells!) and some serious organisation to arrange all the pick-ups and drop-offs. We were able to re-distribute the soap to 14 local charities and schools, right when they needed it most.

Just some examples of the impact!

  • Chemogiftbags used them in their bags to go to ladies and gents undergoing chemotherapy for Breast Cancer in Reading
  • Age UK Reading received a large supply to use during their Happy Feet appointments where they see 30-40 clients a day, several times a week
  • ABC to Read were able to distribute some for their volunteers who support school children with their reading – even during the pandemic
  • RCLC received some to use in their community space where they work with ethnic minority women and their families.
  • And, that’s only four out of the 14 charities!