Between selling holidays, Hays Travel’s agents have raised a huge amount of money for various charities. Samantha Mayling reports.

Hays Travel’s network of more than 180 branches across the UK raised £68,122 for local charities last year.

The money has been topped up with £38,386 from the company’s own charity, the Hays Travel Foundation, bringing the total to more than £106,000.

Mandy Sousa, consumer events manager, said each branch is given a small budget each year to support fundraising activities in their communities. Some of the funds raised are matched by the Hays Travel Foundation if they meet certain criteria.

She said fundraising efforts have continued apace in 2019, with thousands of pounds generated for good causes. Events held include:

• Redcar staff and customers walked a collective 34.9 miles on a treadmill – the distance from the North Yorkshire agency to Hays Travel’s head office. They raised £1,525 for Victoria’s Wish, a Tees Valley charity that helps children with cancer or life-threatening illnesses.

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• Agents in Brighouse, West Yorkshire, raised £630 at an annual 1940s weekend event. The money was donated to the Yorkshire Children’s Trust, which helps children and families with emotional and financial needs.

• Katie Officer from Hays’ Hythe branch in Kent raised £1,925 for the Oakhaven Hospice with a skydive.

• Ashleigh Davison and Ebonie Bruce at Hays Travel in Cockerton, County Durham, raised more than £1,000 for the Daisy Chain Project, a local charity that helps children on the autistic spectrum and their families across the Tees Valley, also thanks to a skydive.

• The Dorchester branch in Dorset raised £1,296 at Easter with a bingo evening in aid of the Lexi May Trust, which supports Dorset children with terminal illnesses or life-limiting conditions.

• The Northallerton agency  in North Yorkshire raised £1,000 with a stall and tombola in aid of Freddie’s Fight, which is raising money for a toddler who needs treatment for cancer in the US.

• The team at Stanley, County Durham, raised £1,520, through a party bingo night, for childen’s cancer charity Henry Dancer Days.

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The Hays Travel Foundation

Since it was founded in 2015, the foundation has donated £750,215 to causes that support young people and create opportunities for them to fulfil their potential.

Irene Hays, chair of the Hays Travel board, said: “John [Hays] and I have always been committed to encouraging young people to be the best they can be through our apprenticeships and development schemes.

“The Hays Travel Foundation is an extension of that. We want young people in the communities where we operate to have the opportunity to flourish too, be that in sport, the arts, academia, or their health and wellbeing. For years we have been inspired and moved by the amazing things that our colleagues achieve with charities and good causes in our shops and head office.”

haystravelfoundation.co.uk