Hastings Direct staff raise £15,000 for Raystede

15th May 2012

Staff from Bexhill insurance brokers Hastings Direct has raised £15,000 for its charity of the year — Raystede Centre for Animal Welfare. The monies are being used to help build a new outdoor classroom to help educate children about animal welfare.

Hastings Direct is an insurance broker employing over 1,200 staff. The company offers car, home, pet, van and motorbike insurance and is one of the UK's fastest growing brokers and one of the top three employers in East Sussex.

Raystede Centre for Animal Welfare (registered charity no. 237696) is a 45 acre rescue, welfare centre and sanctuary for over 1,000 animals nestled in the heart of the Sussex countryside at Ringmer. Free to the general public to visit, Raystede is passionate about the wellbeing of all animals and is committed to giving them the best possible life.

Over 1,500 unwanted and abandoned animals arrive at the centre annually. Dogs, cats and other companion animals are found new caring homes while others remain in Raystede's care for the rest of their days. The centre specialises in education programmes for children of all ages and is run entirely on voluntary contributions.

Hastings Direct staff have fundraised all year with cake bakes, dress down days, run marathons and undertaken a range of sponsored events to provide funds for the new outdoor education class.

Hastings' staff has also helped physically prepare and build the new outdoor classroom. As part of its commitment to donating 1,000 days to the local community — the company has created Team Build Thursdays — each week sending a team up to Raystede to dig, plant, sweep and help prepare the ground for the building of the new outdoor classroom.

Jay Wootten, chair of the charity committee was joined by Raystede's fundraising manager, Tracey Harris. Jay Wootten: "Our staff has really enjoyed supporting Raystede — the team building days have proved so popular, many staff have asked if they can go again. We are in discussions with Raystede to see if more staff can help later in the year in the final phases of the classroom's construction."

Tracey Harris, fundraising manager, Raystede: "We are extremely grateful for the commitment of companies like Hastings Direct, who not only volunteer their time, but have raised a significant amount of money for us".

For more information about animal welfare visit www.raystede.org.

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