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Fundraising with some Yorkshire grit....


Dartmouth’s South Embankment have spent the year fundraising for the RNLI – the building society’s charity of the year.


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Launched to coincide with the RNLIs National SOS Fundraising Day in January, the year of fundraising from branches across the country will, it is hoped, bring in big sums. In Dartmouth, Michelle has personally brought energy and enthusiasm to organising events– and has taken on a few challenges on behalf of the charity ‘which saves lives at sea’.


“The RNLI is a very worthy charity. When I became manager in Dartmouth after being part of the staff for eight years, I decided I wanted to challenge myself in the same way the RNLI crews challenge themselves every time they go on a rescue to show my support.


“I decided I wanted to do something I had never contemplated before – so I enrolled to run a half marathon and then do a skydive! I’ve never done anything like it before and found I loved the running! The skydive was a wonderful buzz too and something I’m really glad I did.” Michelle started jogging to train for this year’s Torbay half-marathon, which she completed in just over two and a half hours. She enjoyed it so much she has now signed up for another in October – which she hopes to run with some of the Dart Lifeboat station crew. These, combined with her skydive, means Michelle has brought in more than £500 on her own for the RNLI. “My partner is often out on boats, I go surfing, and other members of my team here have family members who work on the river or the sea,”


ichelle Concannon and her team at the Yorkshire Building Society on


she said. “This year is a great opportunity to do something for an amazing organisation and we intend to make the most of it!”


the YBS team with members of the Dart RNLI Lifeboat: Tony Chapman and Lee Darch (Michelle centre left)


Pulling on her running shoes was not the first bit of fundraising Michelle and the staff at Dartmouth’s YBS branch have been involved in – they have been the contact for many local groups and charities who have achieved funding from the YBS Charitable Foundation.


In the last few years the branch has helped in donations to more than 57 charities with amounts ranging from £50 to £1,000. “We want to set ourselves apart by


from the Yorkshire Building Society Community Investment Fund - a smaller fund set up to help the smaller charities and good causes that can often be overlooked for a donation. The branch was also a sponsor of the 2011 Dartmoor Yomp in support of the armed forces and also helped to secure contributions for Cool Recovery, Marie Curie Cancer Care, Leonard Cheshire and the Children’s Hospice South West. This year’s fundraising adventures have been an example of how the branch want to do more for charity – the branch have organised cake sales, raffles and boat trips, bringing in more than £1,000 for the RNLI.


giving the best customer experience and being involved with the community. We’ve given to Dartmouth Caring, the Flavel, the Townstal Community Hall, bought a kit for the local Under 14s football team, given to Spinal Research, Dartmouth Pre-School and The Merlin Project – it all helps to make a difference in this community. We are proud to be part of it.”


In 2010 the Townstal Community Hall was looking for items such as kitchen equipment and furniture to be used by the many groups that hold sessions within the hall. The Charitable Foundation gave them £650.


Over the last year the branch have also made £700 worth of donations


Along with their continued support for the RNLI our local YBS have been keen to lend their support to Devon Air Ambulance, Dartmouth Life Boats and the Fire Fighters Charity. And there’s more to come. “We are having a Row-a-thon on August 9 in the branch – all the staff in the branch are taking part and most of the RNLI shore team and crew will do a slot – including Monty! If people pop in they can make a guess how far the team has rowed for £1 and there will be a prize on offer,” she said. “It’s going to be a really fun day with lots of ways to raise funds for the RNLI – we are hoping lots of people will come down to take part, get involved and have fun! There’s a special boat trip after the fun day up the river Dart – we have local band Funk54 playing and tickets are only £12.50 – you can buy them in store. It’s going to be a great, fun event and one which will again support a wonderful charity – come on and join us!”


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