Last Friday hundreds of Softcat staff from regional offices across the UK made a heroic effort for Comic Relief, dressing as superheroes and cartoon characters and participating in various fundraising activities, raising over 10,000 for poor and disadvantaged people in the UK and the world’s poorest countries.
Sporting activities included bike and golfing challenges, a dance competition and a crossbar challenge. More relaxed fundraisers included a charity retro gaming competition and a FIFA competition, where staff flaunted their gaming prowess.
Staff also raised cash by nominating people for a dunking – in ice-cold water. The dunk tank was filled by Marlow Fire Brigade.
A raffle raised £7,000 for Comic Relief, with raffle prizes including iPads, signed Arsenal FC shirts, an extra day’s holiday, and a shopping experience with sales director Matt Jones. Prizes were donated by Softcat’s staff and business partners. Softcat’s Red Nose Day antics were filmed by US TV channel NBC.
On Friday evening many Softcat staff stayed late to help operate as a call centre for Comic Relief, helping to take thousands of pledges from generous donors across the UK. Softcat partners Dell, Snow Software and Trend Micro all stepped in to take part and keep the volunteers fed and watered.
Charles Harman and Michael Walker organised the day of fundraising and the call centre.
Charles said, “Every year we’re overwhelmed by everyone’s generosity – despite the countless fundraisers we throw, everyone continues to dig deep, and we’d like to thank our staff and generous partners for their donations and raffle prizes. Softcat staff always come out all guns blazing for fundraising days and Friday’s event was no different – the office was packed with cartoon characters and superheroes and everyone got really involved in all the fundraising activities. A special thank you to our employee Dan Clinch who shaved his beard off, raising £2,000 – it’s becoming a yearly tradition and I think he deserves a special mention.”
Managing director Colin Brown said, “We were thrilled to be a Comic Relief call centre for the third year running; many of our staff worked from 8am through til 6pm then did another six hours on the phones for Comic Relief, their stamina is astounding so a big well done and thank you to them. I was delighted not to be dunked in the ice bath this year, and extend my thanks to the various managers who managed to get more nominations than me. Thanks to all our partners who’ve donated money or prizes, as always we don’t expect anything and really appreciate the thought.”
Softcat is committed to charity work, and has raised over £1.2million for various causes over the years. Its next charity event will be its annual May Ball, which last year raised £250,000 for charity Dreams Come True.