Sustainability Series Part 4: Supporting the Community

Woking & Sam Beare Hospice

Engaging with our local community to help charities which need our support

Part 4 of our Sustainability Series

This article is part of our ongoing series about how Tante Marie Culinary Academy leads the way as a truly sustainable food business, resulting in our 3 star rating from the Sustainable Restaurant Association and recent nomination for the Sustainability Award at the Toast of Surrey Business Awards in 2018.

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Sustainability Focus: Society – Support the Community

In the second post of our Sustainability Series we highlighted what a positive step our relocation into new premises had been for the business, particularly in helping to reduce our energy consumption per student.

Another effect of this was a dramatic increase in requests from the many good causes in the region, asking us for charitable support.

We immediately recognised we were well placed to help them and we would love to be able to support all of these worthy causes. We quickly realised we could fill the academy ten times over with spaces we allocate to charities, but we would soon find ourselves without a business.

With that in mind we identified that the best way for us to make a real difference is to focus our efforts on one charity and deliver greater results than by trying to help many charities with little bits here and there.

To create a policy which is fair, we review our nominated charity every two years and invite worthy causes to submit applications which are considered against our core business principles.

We have previously supported Linkable, who support children and vulnerable adults with learning difficulties. More recently we have been supporting Woking & Sam Beare Hospices through a range of coordinated events:

  • Woking Food & Drink Festival has become a major annual feature in the region. Upwards of 150,000 visitors flock to Woking over three days. This is a great opportunity for us to support this worthy cause and help raise money by auctioning the food we cook in the Tante Marie Culinary Academy Theatre
  • We also create bespoke courses for the hospice, which they use as fundraising opportunities
  • In December 2018 we are running a demonstration morning for the charity to get the festive spirit engaged
  • Our own Managing Director, Andrew Maxwell, supports Woking & Sam Beare Hospices during his regular summer triathlon season which also includes Prudential ride London

Such organisations need the support of their local community and in the case of Woking & Sam Beare Hospices we may all one-day find ourselves needing their fabulous care. What we can do for them is only small in terms of their overall fundraising needs, but it is an important step. We do what we can, and no matter how much we can do, we aim to do more. Supporting Woking & Sam Beare Hospices is one piece of the puzzle within our wider society focus. Treating our staff fairly, feeding people well and supporting the community combine and these little things give our staff and students a lovely morale boost.

WSBH Staff

“We are delighted that Tante Marie have chosen us their charity for the next two years. The fact they can support us as a key partner is such a fantastic relationship for the hospice and we are extremely grateful for the way in which Tante Marie support us. With generous auction prizes for our hospice led events, special cooking demonstrations dedicated to Woking and Sam Beare Hospices and their huge support at the annual Woking Food Festival, we really are extremely lucky to be working with them.

As a charity, for every £5 of cost we have to fundraise £4, so having the support of local businesses like Tante Marie is fantastic and we are extremely thankful for all they do.” 

– Woking and Sam Beare Hospices

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