By Tessa Ogle, Managing Director of the Electrical Industries Charity
When you are faced with difficult circumstances in your life- whether you are caring for a loved one, have a serious illness or struggling with financial issues, it is important to have a strong support network around you.
Currently, there are 1.3 million people in the electrical industry who are working or have worked in the electrical or energy related sector. 130,000 of those people are eligible for support, 23,000 are non-working disabled people, 50,000 are pensioners, and 100,000 provide full-time care to members of their family. In total 330,000 people in our industry are in desperate need of a support network to help them to overcome the most challenging situations in their lives.
So far, the Electrical Industries Charity is engaged with over 200 companies and helped over 700 cases with financial support, but there is still a significant number of people within our industry who still need assistance with a wide variety of issues.
One of the ways that the Charity is helping those in need is through its Practical Participation Programme. The Programme aims to get everyone within the electrical industry involved in volunteering their time and skills to help families and individuals in the industry who have become ill (such as a stroke) and require equipment and home adaptations to get around their home.
The Practical Participation Programme offers an opportunity for companies to be involved by using their unique skills of time, equipment and materials to make a significant contribution to improving the lives of retired colleagues, apprentices, employees and their families.
Your practical participation could radically improve someone’s quality of life. For example, last year the Practical Participation Programme helped Max, a severely disabled six-year-old boy who shortly after his first birthday was diagnosed with QuadriplegicCerebral Palsy, Dystonia and Chronic Lung Disease which left him wheelchair bound and unable to do anything himself. As part of the Programme, the Charity worked together with other companies and provided Max and his family with the essential financial support which helped Max to have all the essential equipment and necessary house adaptations that he required.
Once you sign up to be a partner of the Practical Participation Programme, the Charity will approach you on as needed basis to ask for your assistance. The Charity would also value your involvement in their regional committees and coordination of challenge and fundraising activities in your workplaces. As a partner of the Charity, you will be making a significant contribution to improving lives of people in your industry.
Practical support can go a long way if there are many of us to help. By being part of this Programme, you can help the Charity extend its support network and help to improve the lives of those in need.