When EUROSPAR and ViVOXTRA retailers, staff and shoppers Made it to £1 Million for Cancer Fund for Children earlier this year, it was cause for huge celebration.

And now, the team behind the campaign has won the Belfast Telegraph Business Award for Excellence in Corporate Social Responsibility for the partnership which incentivised over 60 retailers from across Northern Ireland to go the extra mile for the leading local children’s cancer charity.

This year’s awards, winners of which were announced recently, celebrated the resilience businesses have shown in 2020, particularly over the past few months. The Excellence in Corporate Social Responsibility award sought to reward the company “which has made a significant, positive impact through its involvement in a specific programme or initiative, designed to make a demonstratable difference to the community”.

Bronagh Luke, Head of Corporate Marketing at Henderson Group, owners of the EUROSPAR and ViVOXTRA brands in Northern Ireland said the impact of the campaign can be felt by the extra services that were able to be delivered by the charity; “Over the nine years our retailers have been engaged with Cancer Fund for Children, funds raised have enabled over 500 therapeutic short breaks in Daisy Lodge for impacted families to spend quality time together, almost 10,000 hours of one on one support for children and young people who have had a parent diagnosed with cancer, and almost 1,500 young people have benefitted from residential weekends at the organisation’s log cabin facility.

“The impact can be measured in more than just pennies and pounds, it has been a huge morale booster for our employees and our retailers to bring their own teams together for a great cause. 100% of our EUROSPAR and ViVOXTRA retailers were on board to smash our fundraising goal of £1 million in just eight years, two years ahead of target. We have now raised a phenomenal £1.2 million!”

Phil Alexander, CEO at Cancer Fund for Children extended his congratulations to the team; “Having partnered with EUROSPAR and ViVOXTRA’s retailers for the past nine years, we cannot express how impressed we are with their dedication to reach every milestone and truly make a difference to the children, young people and their families who use our services.

“It was a pleasure to meet each retailer at our celebration event back in March and hear their own motivations and stories for supporting us so strongly. Working with Hendersons is much more than a partnership, we feel they are an extension of our team and work strategically with us to achieve mutually beneficial goals. This is the first time any corporate partner of Cancer Fund for Children has raised anywhere near this amount and in such a short space of time. We send them our heartfelt congratulations for winning this award.”

The Belfast Telegraph Business Awards in partnership with Ulster Bank, were judged by a panel which included Anne McGregor from the NI Chamber of Commerce; Mark Crimmins, Head of Ulster Bank in Northern Ireland; Kirsty McManus, NI Director of the IoD and Chaired by Professor Mark Durkin, Ulster University Business School, who commented; “The category winners of the awards represent a diverse range of talent and expertise across small businesses, family firms and larger corporates. I want to congratulate all of them on their success in the awards, and we look forward to revealing the overall Outstanding Business of the Year on October 9.”

Bronagh finished; “while we’re celebrating, it’s important not to forget what a tough six months it has been for our charity partners with many of their events being cancelled resulting in a massive reduction of  funds. Our Pick Me Up Picnic initiative over the summer helped raise awareness of the support Cancer Fund for Children still needs, and we are working together towards building and futureproofing our strategic partnership for the coming years.”