Sharing any client’s news is the part of my job I love, but when it comes to sharing stories about people helping each other, it’s even better.
As a trustee of Band of Builders, this charity isn’t just a client but has huge personal significance to me. I’ve watched it grow from when I covered the first story on a bunch of people who came together to help someone into a registered charity that helps people across the country.
The latest project was to help Chris Joy, a dad of four from Norwich who was left struggling to get in and out of his home without help after he was diagnosed with rare degenerative neurological condition Cerebellar Ataxia.
The condition – which affects just 10,000 people in the UK – means Chris suffers from symptoms including loss of coordination, double vision, balance issues, speech issues and tinnitus and has to spend 50% of the time in a wheelchair.
As well as having to stop work as a plasterer, the father-of-four found himself struggling to get in and out of his home in Cringleford, Norwich, because the driveway and pathway are too uneven for his mobility scooter.
Step in Band of Builders. After having to wait for months due to coronavirus, a team of volunteers spent eight days in October overhauling the outside space at Chris’ home to make sure he can get in and out more easily.
During that time, they revamped the driveway, landscaped the paths to the side of the house and installed a new lowered entrance door to allow wheelchair access to the property before revealing the project to Chris and his family.
Unsurprisingly, the project captured people’s hearts across social media and across the newsdesks too.
BBC Norfolk, ITV Anglia, the Norwich Evening News and the Eastern Daily Press all covered the project at the start and finish, and it also attracted attentions from trade magazines like Fencing News, Roofing Today and Professional Builder Magazine, who visited the site during the project.
After its completion, the story was picked up by even more outlets including Fix Radio, Greatest Hits Radio, and the Press Association newswire, which meant it appears in regional and national newspapers across the country.
Of course, coverage in and of itself is great for any PR. But coverage for something like Band of Builders means so much more. Coverage of the charity’s work means more support, more donations, which ultimately means more projects to help more people. It also means raised awareness which means more people who need help might know where to come to get that help. Not to mention the fact it means that the people who give up their time for free get some recognition for the amazing thing they do.
A win win for everyone and a wonderful thing to be a part of.
If you want more information on Band of Builders, visit their website here.