Charity and community are big part of trade shows’ behind-the-scenes work
Trade shows aren’t all about the sales and turnover, reaching out to the community and helping charity are also a big part of the Spring & Autumn Fair teams’ behind-the-scenes efforts.
With Autumn Fair about to kick off its four-day buying extravaganza this Sunday, 4 September, organiser Hyve Group is very aware the Birmingham event also brings together the retail community and provides the platform for business, networking, re-connecting with peers, and inspiration.
And Hyve’s teams take that industry connection much further with their involvement in fundraising and community work.
As the official charity partner, Spring & Autumn Fair has worked with Retail Trust for over a year raising both cash and awareness of the great work the organisation does to support workers in the retail industry.
Next month the Three Peaks Challenge is the goal for seven Hyve employees, including divisional managing director Julie Driscoll, head of global partnerships Stuart Thomas, and marketing team members Lucy Green, Charlotte Forshaw, Alex Oxley, Hannah Thomson, and Susannah Griffin, and there will be card machines and money buckets at Autumn Fair for visitors to donate to this worthy cause, or people can use the GoFundMe link.
The Hyve hikers have set themselves a £6,300 target to boost the Retail Trust’s coffers with this demanding one-day trek of climbing the UK’s three highest peaks in 24 hours – Snowdon in Wales at 3,560ft (1,085m), Scafell Pike in England 3,209ft (978m), and Ben Nevis in Scotland 4,413ft (1,345m). The total walking distance is 23 miles and the total ascent is 10,052ft (3,064m).
Lucy Green, senior marketing manager at Spring & Autumn Fair, said: “We’re so proud to support the Retail Trust and to be able to name them as our show charity partner. We want to give back and raise what we can to support this phenomenal charity, which is why we have decided to embark on this challenge as a team.
“Over the last year, we have partnered with the Retail Trust to provide independent retailers with access to free and confidential health and well-being support – well-being and mental health is the number one priority at Hyve, which is why this partnership means so much to us all. Being able to offer support to our customers is critical. The Retail Trust cares passionately about the health and well-being of everyone in retail.”
The Retail Trust has helped hundreds of thousands of retail workers since the charity was set up in 1832 year and, last year alone, 97,863 people accessed its helpline and digital self-help support. They delivered nearly 7,000 counselling sessions and provided £800,000 in financial aid to enable retail colleagues to remain in their own homes, feed their families and improve their quality of life.
And the charity is reaching out at Autumn Fair with the Wellbeing Hour on the Inspiring Retail Stage, at 3.50pm on Tuesday 6 September. As part of the Retail Trust Flight School training programme, the charity’s wellbeing practitioner Andrea Woodside will help participants come away with a plan for having a productive wellbeing conversation with any member of their team currently struggling with their wellbeing.
In July, Spring & Autumn Fair’s event director Daniel Mayhew and team members Yvette Marshall, Daniel Goodban, and Jason Carvey helped raise £22,000 for the Alzheimer’s Society taking part in the Cardgains 22-mile Ultimate Ullswater charity walk challenge.
Each year, Cardgains chooses a different charity to support and, since the first event in 1998, the buying group’s golf days, bike rides, and major walking challenges have raised around £350,000.
Autumn Fair is also partnering with the GCA this season, inviting everyone to take part in activity for Thinking Of You Week – many of the greeting card exhibitors have donated cards for a TOYW wall in Hall 6, the greetings sector at the show.
TOYW, running this year from 19-25 September, sees people across the world send cards to friends, loved ones, work colleagues, neighbours to say hello, thinking of you, share a joke or just to reach out and connect. There is scientific evidence to show that receiving a handwritten card makes people feel much more special than receiving instant social media communication.
Daniel Mayhew, Spring & Autumn Fair’s event director, added: “These shows can often be perceived as big corporate events but there’s so much more going on behind the scenes to support the community of which we are part.
“We are incredibly proud to get involved in, as well as initiate, so many worthwhile charity activities, as well as facilitate the drive towards sustainability with our own Power Of One campaign. I’m proud to say there’s a lot of heart within the Spring & Autumn Fair team. These are the actions that make a difference and make our jobs so rewarding.”
For further information and to register to attend visit www.autumnfair.com, where you can also download the official Autumn Fair app.
Top: Cardgains’ joint md Chris Dyson and marketing director Penny Shaw (centre) with Spring & Autumn Fair’s Daniel Mayhew, Yvette Marshall, Daniel Goodban and Jason Carvey at the Ultimate Ullswater finish