‘It certainly opened my eyes to some of the challenges facing homeless people’

This month, our team at Burton White House and our Work + Learning team held a gardening workshop to continue the work carried out by volunteers from EY over the summer.

We met employees from EY earlier this year who wanted to get involved. This relationship culminated in a corporate volunteering week in July where a number of EY volunteers came to our hostels in Croydon, Crystal Palace and Kensington & Chelsea to participate in workshops and events and engage with our customers.

On Monday, EY held a bake sale at their head office and books and toiletries were gathered for our customers. On Tuesday, we held a ‘Can’t cook, won’t cook’ competition at Alexandra House. Customers and volunteers from EY were split into two teams to create two dishes each. The dishes were judged by a Team Manager and a guest from Airsports – who run weekly activities for customers at Alexandra House. On Wednesday, volunteers from EY went to Burton-White House to improve the garden; planting herbs, bushes and flowers with the help from several green-fingered customers. On Thursday, volunteers went to the Fitze Millenium Centre to hold a ‘Grill your CV’ event. The team set up a barbeque for customers and a drop-in CV workshop to help customers with their employability skills.

The week ended with a group of customers from a range of services also visited the EY office on the Thursday to reflect on their employment goals and gained advice about how to create and refine their CV to help them towards employment in a series of workshops and activities.

We would like to thank EY volunteers, not only for the generous donation of their time and skills, but also for providing the ingredients, cooking equipment, plants, gardening tools and barbeque utensils.

Karen Wilkinson, Head of Experienced Hire Recruitment at EY, said:

‘I have been extremely impressed. My positive view is driven by the organisation itself and the opportunity it provided for people in need of help and accommodation. It certainly opened by eyes to some of the challenges facing homeless people and I hope that this is just the start of future collaborations.’

If you are considering providing corporate sponsorship for Evolve to support our work with homeless people in London, please see our Corporate Partnerships page.


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