Fortalice Donation Day Review & Comments

Box Power

On the 7th December 2023 the Box Power Team headed out of the office again to help one of our partnered charities. After the fun we had had the previous week helping to raise funds for Fortalice, we decided to help them again by assisting with Christmas donation day.

To say that Benjamin, Claire and Kirsty were unprepared for the amount of hard work that they would need to put in would be an understatement – and it perhaps didn’t help that they had been dancing the night away at the TELCA awards and sipping G&T’s until the late hours the night before!

The team were tasked with organising the gifts into categories, estimating a rough cost of the items for Fortalices’s records and bagging them up ready to pop onto a van heading to their refuge. Despite anticipating just a small number of donations they sorted 1000’s of gifts from a number of generous donors throughout Bolton.

It was lovely to be able to meet members of the local community who support Fortalice as they dropped off their gifts, we met representatives of Royal Mail, Dunelm and a number of local schools, churches and businesses. The donation door was very busy and crowded, with bags of toys flying through at a rapid pace, but the team made sure that they had time to catch up with everyone who stopped by.

Box Power
Box Power

The toys, clothes, chocolates and other wonderful gifts filled the sorting room until it was impossible to stack them any higher. They lost count at over 300 Barbie’s (Barbiemania had officially hit Bolton for Christmas 2023!), 200 selection boxes and estimated that everything they helped to load into the van heading for the children’s centre had a total value of well over £4,000.

Although the day was a lot of hard work, the team managed to sneak in a couple of tea breaks and catch up with the Fortalice team – who were equally as exhausted, from driving around Bolton to collect items that donors were unable to drop at their office. They informed everyone how much of a difference the gifts would make to children this Christmas, and how they will help the families that have been through a tough time recently have their first ‘normal’ Christmas for potentially the first time in years.

Everyone had one last crazy rush on their hands just before 4pm, to make sure that all of the gifts were well wrapped and loaded onto the van before it headed off to the refuge – This was no small feat, and over 20 separate loads were rushed through the office building and stacked high into the van, until the van physically couldn’t hold anymore.

Although they were dead on their feet the team pledged to be back next year – armed with more volunteers and a full night’s sleep!

Box Power

“We had an amazing time at the donation day, it was so heart-warming to see how generous the people of Bolton are towards Fortalice, and the gifts donated will certainly make some children very happy this Christmas. As hard as the day was, I think the team all agree that we can’t wait to come back and help out next time” – Kirsty Treble, Head of the Complex Billing Team

“The toys donated were amazing, I’d love to receive most of them myself this Christmas. It’s great that the people of Bolton have been so generous, and I hope that these will make some children very happy this year” – Benjamin Dalby, Pricing Analyst

“Being a mum, it’s so hard to imagine being in a position where you aren’t able to buy your children presents at Christmas. Days like today really put things into perspective about how lucky most people are, and how there are people out there struggling who deserve more help. I am just grateful to have been given the opportunity to help out, and knowing that there will be less children out there waking up without presents this Christmas is fantastic” – Claire Owen, Head of Risk and Client Retention.