Over 100 of the best-known names in cleaning and FM have come together to raise an impressive £7,000 in cash and a further £7,000 in product donations to support The Hygiene Bank charity in tackling hygiene poverty in the UK.
Organiser and host of the fundraiser, Dominic Ponniah, CEO of Cleanology, described the support as incredible: “The generosity we’ve seen has been overwhelming, we had to upscale our plans several times to adapt to demand for tickets. It shows that people across industry are willing to collaborate to support action for hygiene poverty, which is a serious issue for many in the UK.”
With a fifth of the population living in poverty, many struggle to buy even basics for personal hygiene and cleaning their homes. Figures show that one in three people has had to go without hygiene essentials, with people choosing to forego hygiene products before they are forced to accept donations from a food bank.
The event took place at Cleanology’s headquarters in Clapham. A charity auction saw tough bidding over a range of lots all donated by Cleanology clients, including luxury kitchen appliances from Smeg; dinner at trendy London restaurants Bistrotheque and Scalini; a private tour of the Maddox Gallery; a floristry course at McQueens, and a £250 gift card from luxury Italian lingerie company Intimissimi. Raffle prizes included donations from Biscuiteers, Joe & Seph’s Popcorn and Innocent Drinks. But the biggest sale of the night was a pair of signed Ronaldo and Messi football boots, offered by Rahul Moodgal, a trustee at The Hygiene Bank, which sold for a staggering £950.
Donations from the night will go to The Hygiene Bank charity. Edgar Penollar, CEO of The Hygiene Bank said: “The Hygiene Bank has grown from a simple belief that everyone should be able to access what we need to keep clean. It’s not right that feeling clean should be a luxury or a privilege for anyone in our society, yet many of us are living in poverty and can’t afford the basics. Each of our 150 Hygiene Bank projects encourages the public and businesses to donate in-date, unused products via our localised network of drop-off points. Products are collected, sorted, and distributed to organisations such as charities, local authority services, and schools – which then redistribute to their service users experiencing hygiene poverty.
“Cleanology’s incredible ongoing support not only raises vital funds for the charity but, by spreading awareness, allows our voice to be heard.”
Guests at Cleanology’s first annual fundraiser included Chairman of The Hygiene Bank, Tom Poynter; Bruce Bratley, Founder and CEO of First Mile; Nick Winstone, CEO Bothongo Hygiene Solutions; Simon Henderson, CEO of Darwin Clayton; and Syed Ahemd, Founder and CEO of Savortex.
CEO and Founder of waste management firm First Mile, Bruce Bratley, said: “The work of The Hygiene Bank is incredibly important and it is fantastic that Cleanology is backing it. In addition to the health implications of a clean home and good personal hygiene, the mental wellness impact of being clean is massive. We all know how positive we feel after cleaning our homes or how zingy we feel after a shower and good scrub. I think the mental positivity delivered by the Hygiene Bank will grow and grow. First Mile is delighted to be supporting Cleanlogy’s Hygiene Bank fundraising evening.”
Ponniah said: “Our previous fundraisers have involved collections of products for The Hygiene Bank. For example, Cleanology’s own donation of hand sanitiser amounted to over £13,000 in value, while janitorial suppliers donated dozens of their environmentally-friendly paper products, such as hand wipes and toilet roll. The resulting campaign generated a whopping tonne of hygiene products, ranging from hand sanitiser and spray to toilet roll and tissues.
“This time we wanted to take things further, and we have shown what can be achieved by working together. We aim to make this an annual event, and continue to spread awareness of hygiene poverty.”
Nick Winstone added: “Bothongo Hygiene Solutions is delighted to be donating 1,000 bottles of sanitiser to The Hygiene Bank, in recognition of the fantastic work it is doing to alleviate hygiene poverty. Seeing that it was attending a reception hosted by Cleanology, with whom we have a long-standing association as a Group, we thought it made sense to present the donation with Cleanology at the event.”
Other sponsors included Liberty Hygiene, which provided the red carpet; Soap2o, which provided the marquee and lighting, ICE (Industrial Cleaning Equipment), which donated a raffle prize; and janitorial suppliers Castle, Futures and Foremost, which all donated products to be sent local Hygiene Bank projects. Leading technology company, Savortex, donated a state-of-the-art electric hand dryer to be sent to a school currently being supported by The Hygiene Bank.