Staff at Blacklock steakhouse volunteer with Whitechapel Mission

Posted on the 4th June 2019

Blacklock staff volunteering at Whitechapel Mission

At Blacklock, have spent the last couple of years fundraising for a global children’s charity that was very important to us.  After a while however, we found that despite them teaching our team what they did and where our fundraising was being spent, there was a bit of a disconnect.

This all changed one morning last year when our owner decided on a hands-on approach and took a group of staff from our City restaurant down to homeless charity, Whitechapel Mission.

They were only there for a few hours but they returned to the restaurant with grins stretching ear to ear. They couldn’t stop talking about what they had seen and what they had done.

Those who thought they ‘didn’t have the time’ or were ‘too busy with work’ had realised; not only how little time out of their week it had taken, but what an impact it had had those having breakfast at the mission, and on themselves.

Marianne Denning

This got us thinking about our partnership with charities in our small but growing company. Though we were working with an amazing group, the potential for hands on volunteering a couple times a year just wasn’t available in a charity with such a worldwide outreach, so we thought we’d take it a bit closer to home.

We gave the teams in each of our three restaurants the choice of three London-based charities to support for the year. We chose charities that were happy to have all the members of our team come, at some point this year, to volunteer.

By giving our staff the choice of which charity they wanted to fundraise and volunteer for, it allowed them to feel more involved from the very beginning.

Choosing a charity that sparked their interest, that they were passionate about, makes it easier for them to talk to our guests about the charity that we’re raising money for and why it’s important. Not just to the charity but also to themselves.

So far we’re already seeing sparks of interest as the teams organise their fundraising, volunteering and even some clothing drives for their new friends.

Blacklock Shoreditch is organising meat-licious barbecues with Spitalfields Crypt Trust. Blacklock Soho is getting the colours out and arms in the air to help Albert Kennedy Trust with their participance in this years London Pride and Blacklock City is hunkering down to sleep out with End Youth Homelessness later in the year.

Marianne Denning

Culture Keeper, Blacklock

Marianne has been working with all three Blacklock restaurants to find the local charity that suits them best to motivate the team member's to get out there and lend a helping hand!

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