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Reading: New collaboration to support health and well-being

By Jo Whittle
5 February 2021

Berkshire Community Foundation is delighted to kick off the new year with a contribution received from the global healthcare leader, Sanofi. Headquartered in the UK at Thames Valley Park, the pharmaceutical company has started the collaboration with a donation of £10,000 to support health and wellbeing in Reading.

Alana-HouseThe majority of the donation will be granted to Parents And Children Together (PACT), an award-winning Reading-based adoption and family support charity that builds and strengthens hundreds of families every year. As well as Ofsted ‘Outstanding’ adoption services, PACT delivers community projects in Reading including Alana House, a women’s community project that provides holistic support to disadvantaged women with complex and multiple needs such as domestic abuse, substance misuse, homelessness and mental health issues.

Women-togetherJeanie Herbert, Alana House manager, remarked: “Thank you to Sanofi for their generous support of our work helping vulnerable women in Reading to combat food poverty and in helping them further develop skills and confidence in cooking healthy food for themselves and their children. The impact of the pandemic has hit our service users hard. They have less money to buy food and that is having a negative impact on their health and wellbeing, and that of their families. This grant will help 50 women and their families through food parcels and ‘Healthy Eating on a Budget’ virtual (and, when possible, in-person) cooking workshops.”

Part of the donation will also go towards funding Berkshire Community Foundation’s core activities, which include fundraising and supporting local charities and volunteer groups that provide crucial social services and address vital community needs across Berkshire.

Jon Yates, CEO of Berkshire Community Foundation, said: “With things off to a challenging start in 2021, it’s great to have some good news to share. The crucial role that local businesses have played in supporting Berkshire through Covid-19 underlines the immense potential of philanthropic business to transform local communities for the better. We’re honoured to have formed the basis of a new long-term collaboration with Sanofi, to ensure that it can maximise its social impact in all its endeavours.”

Hugo Fry, managing director of Sanofi UK, commented: “During these unprecedented times it’s never been more important to look after each other in our communities, and local charities working hard on the ground across Berkshire are absolutely essential to keeping people safe and well through this crisis. We are grateful for the work of the Berkshire Community Foundation, proud to support its critically important mission and small charities that help enhance the lives of vulnerable individuals or families in our community. As a team, we will continue to work on additional ways to make a difference and know that as a community we will get through this challenging time together.”

Berkshire Community Foundation is a charity that works across Berkshire to raise, then distribute, money directly to vital local causes. In 2020 it made over £2.3 million in grants through the Vital for Berkshire – Coronavirus Fund, supporting more than 200 charities and community groups in running over 330 projects to improve people’s lives during the pandemic. To find out more about BCF’s collaboration with businesses on philanthropic and CSR activities, please visit its Giving and Philanthropy page.

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