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B&CE’s Charitable Trust1 celebrates 30 years of supporting the construction industry on October 2nd , with the promise of much more to come.
Since it was set up in 1991, the Trust, which is based at the B&CE2 headquarters in Crawley, West Sussex, has given away millions of pounds not just to individuals in need but has also awarded scores of training and research grants which have helped to both improve skills and drive-up standards in the UK construction industry.
As a result of Covid-19, 2020-21 was a record year for the team at the Charitable Trust, who supported 2,359 people, either through hardship or training grants, having received more than 8,000 emails and 1,923phone calls during that period.
Patrick Heath-Lay is chief executive officer of B&CE, the not-for-profit organisation that funds the Trust, said: “The work of the team is so much more than that of a grant giving body. They support every single call that comes through and they won’t leave anybody without giving them support.
“Looking ahead, we want to increase activities of the Trust and support more people by investing the money to help launch projects such as those that focus on health and safety and give people and organisations grants.”
One of the thousands of people who has been supported by the Charitable Trust over the decades is Edward McArthur, a 44-year-old former offshore scaffolder from Glasgow. He contacted the Charitable Trust, after he was told that he would need to buy an orthopaedic bed to help him cope with effects of a hereditary condition.
He says: “I will be forever grateful for the help I received from B&CE’s Charitable Trust. I have had an immense amount of emotional and practical support from the team who dealt with my case. I was so grateful to receive the money for my bed, which will really aid my recovery, but the Trust gives so much more than financial support.”
Much of the Trust’s work is done in partnership with corporate and educational partners, many of whom who have successfully applied for training and research grants, including the Mowlem Award3 and the Occupational Health Research Award4, which have supported countless projects that have enhanced the skills of thousands of construction workers. Last month the Trust opened the Mowlem Award 2021, which will see one organisation receive a grant of £20,000 to help them deliver training or promote health and safety in construction.
Applications for the Mowlem Award will close at 5pm on Friday, October 8th.
The Occupational Health Research Award has enabled the Trust to support many important research projects, which have sought to improve conditions within the construction industry. Last year’s recipient of the £25,000 grant was Mates in Mind5, a charity that works to improve the mental health and wellbeing of workers across the country. Its latest project is to identify how big a problem metal health is among the vast numbers of small construction firms and how they can best provide support to them.
Managing director of Mates in Mind, Sarah Casemore says: “The support we have received from B&CE’s Charitable Trust has been very important as we would not have been able to undertake the research without it. The Trust is not just a grant giving body that we report back to at the end of the research.”
Another organisation that has benefited from the support of the Charitable Trust is Construction Youth Trust6, which has been awarded more than £100,000 in grants since 2011.
The charity helps young people find work in construction and its CEO, Carol Lynch, said: “Our relationship with the Trust is fantastic as it is not just funding that they provide – it’s a funder plus. If we did not have the support from the Charitable Trust, it would be difficult for us to do what we have done.”
To learn more about B&CE’s Charitable Trust visit: https://bandce.co.uk/the-charitable-trust/
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