Friday 9 June 2017

Marks and Spencer volunteers 'Make it Matter' in Dover

M&S volunteers at Emmaus Dover

A team of staff from the M&S store in Dover have volunteered their time to transform an outdoor space at Emmaus Dover.

On Wednesday 7 June, 12 Marks and Spencer employees teamed up to transform the Potting Shed area at Emmaus Dover’s social enterprise at Archcliffe Fort. The M&S staff volunteers worked with formerly homeless people at the charity to create raised growing beds, paint fences and furniture, pot-on seedlings and update the visual look and feel of the Potting Shed.

“We work with Emmaus Dover as one of our food waste partners so we immediately thought of them when the Make it Matter programme was announced. It’s been a privilege to come and make a difference at their social enterprise and to see the change we’ve made.”

Sarah Horan, Project Lead at M&S in Dover 

Nationwide, employees in every M&S store have taken part in activities as part of a nationwide commitment, launched on June 1st, to dedicate one million hours of community volunteering by 2025.

The Make it Matter commitment aims to create lasting benefits to organisations up and down the country. As well as allowing staff to volunteer on the project, M&S provided £500 towards materials and helped to raise awareness of the charity.

“The Marks and Spencer volunteers were an enormous help to the community in transforming the garden area. The whole day went really well and I found it uplifting and rewarding to work alongside a group of volunteers with such energy. I was overwhelmed by their commitment and enthusiasm. It gave me inspiration to move forward with life in general.”

Anthony, companion at Emmaus Dover 

Emmaus Dover supports 27 formerly homeless people by offering a home, meaningful work in a social enterprise and an opportunity to get back on their feet again. The charity operates four social enterprises in Ashford, Canterbury and Dover, selling donated and refurbished furniture, household goods, clothes, bric-a-brac, plants and vintage wares.

“Our community is extremely grateful to the volunteers from our local M&S for their time, skills and expertise in helping us transform our Potting Shed area. This assistance will help us to sell more plants and produce in our social enterprise, generating an income to support the people who live at Emmaus Dover.”

Debbie Stevenson, Community Manager at Emmaus Dover 

To find out more or support Emmaus Dover head to www.emmaus.org.uk/dover. If you would like to get involved or donate an item, please call 01304 204550 or visit their Dover charity stores at Archcliffe Fort or Bench Street.