The British Beauty Council is proud to have so many amazing Charity Affiliates. As part of our #24DaysOfGratitude campaign, we are speaking to our Charity Affiliates about what they’re grateful for from 2020, as well as looking forward to the year ahead.
What are you grateful for this year?
Although 2020 has been exceptionally challenging, there is so much I’m grateful for. In our second year of existence we saw product donations from individuals and companies increase seven-fold, 200 new volunteers joined the charity, 245 drop off points were added to Boots stores across the UK and we launched National Hygiene Week to help raise awareness about the impact of hygiene poverty. This year, especially due to Covid-19, we saw compassion and kindness unleashed across every region we work in which really gives me hope that collectively we’re thinking about how to make the future brighter for all of us post-pandemic.
What work/achievements as a charity are you most proud of from 2020?
This year was a period of tremendous growth and learning. With our 408 volunteers we have sustained and grown a social movement across the UK demonstrating hygiene poverty exists in, and beyond, the four countries we work in. In both social media and the press, we have started new conversations about the impact of hygiene poverty and how to do something about it. In particular this year National Hygiene Week gained significant local and national attention in the media shinning a light on the fact there are millions who simply can’t afford the basics. In December our brand partner Boots chose to feature the charity in its Christmas advert to raise awareness about the millions of people who are struggling to pay for hygiene basics. Across our 150 projects they have distributed a total of 402,338kg of hygiene products to our network of community partners who provide relief for domestic abuse victims, asylum seekers and refugees, children and young people, older adults, foodbanks, homeless persons, and more.
What are you looking forward to in 2021 as a charity?
We really raised the bar for The Hygiene Bank this year and are excited about our plans for 2021. Although we have made some headway, our work has only begun to ensure that one day everyone living in the UK will have access to essential hygiene products.
The pandemic has changed the way we operate and demonstrates the type of life event that can pull people into poverty without a safety net. As we continue to bring communities together to tackle hygiene poverty, we are planning to increase our internal capacity to support local communities, improve our delivery model, build on our relationships with brands and corporates, and continue to influence the hygiene poverty conversation.
How can people support The Hygiene Bank going forward?
There are so many ways to help. If you’d like to volunteer you can set up a local project in your area or help with an existing project. Or offer your skills to head office for social media, PR, fundraising, data entry and more. If you are a retailer, service provider, school or public service you can be a drop off point for donations by hosting a collection box or sign up to be a business buddy where you collect products and donate them to organisations who help those in need. If you’re a manufacturer and you’d like to donate products to the charity please do get in touch. Of course you can always take the first step and make a product or monetary donation to help those experiencing hygiene poverty.
All the ways to get involved can be found on our website at www.thehygienebank.com.