SHS Group ‘Give and Gain’ by volunteering at Kilcreggan Farm

Audrey Bond & Louisa McCollum making baskets for the Garden Centre at Kilcreggan.
Audrey Bond & Louisa McCollum making baskets for the Garden Centre at Kilcreggan.

A team of 10 from SHS Group have experienced how to ‘Give and Gain’ by volunteering at Kilcreggan Homes Urban Farm in Carrickfergus.

The SHS Group once again took part in Business in the Community’s national ‘Give & Gain’ initiative.

Back Row (L-R) Ian Buchanan, Chris Rafferty, John McLarnon, Louisa McCollum, Kathryn Steen, Kerry Henry and Angela Heddles from Kilcreggan . Front Row (L-R) Michelle Armstrong, Catherine Ross, Audrey Bond, Lorraine Walker and Kathryn Kavanagh.

Back Row (L-R) Ian Buchanan, Chris Rafferty, John McLarnon, Louisa McCollum, Kathryn Steen, Kerry Henry and Angela Heddles from Kilcreggan . Front Row (L-R) Michelle Armstrong, Catherine Ross, Audrey Bond, Lorraine Walker and Kathryn Kavanagh.

In a whole week of fundraising activities within the Group, staff took time out to volunteer with local groups recently, providing over 300 hours of volunteering support for worthwhile causes.

Give and Gain Week provides organisations with the opportunity to let their staff experience the incredible power of employee volunteering. Each year, thousands of people around the world give up their day jobs, roll up their sleeves and support a local community organisation or charity.

Group HR Director, Chris Lillie from the SHS Group, said: “Last year we clocked up 288 volunteering hours across the Group during Give and Gain Week and this year we’ve managed to deliver more than 300 hours of volunteering support.

“The SHS Group is fully committed to making a difference in the local community. We recognise the value of working towards a shared vision and the transformative impact that a collective effort can have.

“We rely on our local communities and it’s really important that we do our part and support them where we can.”

This year a team of 10 volunteers spent time volunteering at Kilcreggan Homes ‘Urban Farm’ in Carrickfergus which offers packages of support to people with learning disabilities, autism and brain injuries. Kilcreggan Homes also offer a unique plan to help service users live as independently as they can and develop the necessary skills to contribute to running a busy urban farm.

Damian Cassidy, Manager of Kilcreggan Homes, who thanked the SHS employees, said: “The SHS volunteers joined us on May 18 and carried out a wide range of tasks, from gardening to painting kids play houses, lime treating and painting the small hen house, tending to planting at the side of a new cabin, re-locating a small bug hotel, revamping the bug hut area, gardening and creating wooden bunting for around the site.

“It is fantastic to see corporate businesses like the SHS Group value the services we provide. We were overwhelmed by the enthusiastic team of volunteers working with us. The efforts have enhanced our offering to those who need us most within the local community. The farm buildings and the grounds look great. Our service users have already remarked on the improvements. All the hard work is really appreciated and we are grateful for this practical support.”