The Business Exchange is media partner for Trowbridge based charity People against Poverty, who through their network Business against Poverty (BaP) help to alleviate poverty in the UK and abroad.
One of their key projects is ‘The Way of Joy’ in Romania, it helps families in the country with daily essentials such as food, clothing, hygiene products, healthcare and educational assistance where necessary.
In March of this year I decided to sign up to go on one of the charity’s bi-annual awareness trips. After meeting charity founders Val and Bill Huxley I was psyched up and ready to go. So often when we donate to a charity we don’t see where the money goes, but with BaP you see the journey from donor to recipient. The BaP team shared with me videos of recent trips and I was so overcome by the dire need of these people I wanted to experience first hand their daily plight, so that I could help spread the message via TBE of what it’s really like and how businesses like ours can make a difference.
Well today is the day I begin my journey to Iasi (pronounced yash) in Eastern Romania. It’s Thursday 19 November and teaming with rain in Bradford on Avon as I leave home with a suitcase full of goodies. Instead of taking clothes I wanted to bring with me some everyday essentials we take for granted. With a little help from my business friends Smarter Media, Little Lightbulb and Accord Office I managed to put together dedicated care packs with toothbrushes, toothpaste and other toiletries and bags packed with stationery goodies including coloured pencils and pens.
My suitcase is filled to the brim with minimal changes of clothing and I keep joking to myself I hope I don’t split my jeans, or spill my dinner down me!
The group of 11 of us left from Grangeside Business Centre, Trowbridge for Heathrow at 10am. Only knowing Val and Immi from BaP I was pleased to meet a group of fab people, including Nicky a teacher from Sutton Benger Primary School, Simon a business training provider (SLTS South West LTD) from Frome and Caroline from Gooseberry Bush Nurseries- one of BaP’s Platinum Sponsors.
On arrival to Heathrow’s terminal 4 we checked in to our initial flight to Bucharest. Following a shaky, turbulence filled flight aided by a glass of red we arrived safe and sound to board internal flight two to Lasi.
Tired from a long day of travelling I’m pleased to find my bedroom at Hotel Sabina. I’m sharing a room with Immi, BaP development manager. We have a huge room with a lounge area for the group to layout all of our goodies ready for donation.
After months of anticipation Val revealed our schedule for the four days (see image below). Tomorrow we are visiting some local families with food parcels. I’ve never done anything like this at home or abroad, so I’m expecting a journey of emotions. If you want to find out what the day had in store for me visit www.tbeswindonandwilts.co.uk tomorrow eve or follow my posts on Twitter @tbesw
To find out more about the work of Business against Poverty and to register your interest in becoming a member visit: www.businessagainstpoverty.com