Harrogate Volkswagen win the Local Business Charity Awards

A massive congratulations to Harrogate Volkswagen who have been crowned this years winners at the North Yorkshire Local Business Charity awards, sponsored by local North Yorkshire insurers, Jelf

Jelf is an award winning consultancy that supports businesses and individuals with expert advice on matters relating to insurance, risk management and employee benefits. Its purpose is simple: to help business and individuals across the UK thrive.

The Local Business Charity Awards recognise the contributions by North Yorkshire businesses to North Yorkshire charities and celebrate their efforts. Harrogate Volkswagen were nominated by Harrogate's Supporting Older People.

A fantastic achievement and one that Sytner Volkswagen are extremely proud of.

The below speech was made on stage by Kate Rogata, from the charity Supporting Older People, prior to the winner being announced.

Local Business Awards Nomination – Kate Rogata

What can I say about the team at Harrogate VW and why they deserve to win the Harrogate Award.

Since 2015, when Kevin Howe, the dealership manager, offered to support us, they have helped the 170 older people living alone who we work with in numerous ways.

Every month they provide 3 huge cars and drivers, who do door to door pick- ups and drop offs for up to 12 older people to our Tea and Talk event. Over 3 years this has been a total of over 430 people. This makes a huge difference to the number of people we can get to the event and real friendships have been formed between the VW staff and our members. One invited someone to join them for Christmas lunch. Pete, who’s here tonight, has taken 2 ladies out with his mum on day trips They have even referred people to our services and have hosted Tea and Talk on Tour in their showroom, providing afternoon tea and a speaker for over 30 people.

They support our fundraising events by donating numerous prizes, entering teams for our quizzes, and buying tickets for and attending our annual Ascot Ladies’ Day fundraiser. In 2018, we were delighted that they chose SOP as their “dedicated” charity to support. They have a “Magic Money Tree” for customer donations, a staff tuck shop and are always looking for new ideas to support us. They host our monthly fundraising group meetings and Kevin and Pete attend when they can. So far they’ve raised about £1,000 for us, which is fabulous.

We have a true partnership, the highlight of which for the last 3 years has been VW hosting our Christmas Party. The team turn half their showroom into a pop-up restaurant for 60 people, pay for the “Roast Inn” catering truck to make the most amazing Christmas lunch with all the trimmings, with prosecco on arrival. The wine flows, served by the team and they have a quiz and bingo too. They also buy everyone a gift, given by Santa. Everyone has the most brilliant time and looks forward to it every year. People bringing their cars in for a service were very envious! There’s a video on our website – watch it if you get chance.

Our partnership with Harrogate VW continues to make the most enormous difference to our work in terms of both our capacity as a really small charity with a team of three part time staff and the pleasure it brings to our members. Sometimes we wonder if we’re a branch of Harrogate VW or they’re part of SOP! We are so proud to work with them and it really is a match made in heaven. We truly believe that this is the best example of Corporate support, in its purest sense, that we have ever seen and we can’t thank them enough.

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