Accountancy & Banking

Biz Bites: Saffery staff donate gifts; Lighthouse Christmas appeal; Dolphin's Christmas programme

By Sam Pither [email protected]

Published: December 3, 2023 | Updated: 1st December 2023

Saffery staff in Bournemouth swap secret Santa for making a difference in their community

Saffery logo

Staff in Saffery’s Bournemouth office have chosen to make a difference in their community this Christmas.

Instead of running their usual ‘Secret Santa’, colleagues have decided to gift presents to local children in the area who are less fortunate.

More than 45 members of the team have donated brand new gifts which will be distributed by the local council to children in the community who wouldn’t normally get a present at Christmas.

Partner Hannah Mazrae said, “It’s a wonderful gesture from our staff who recognise that the spirit of Christmas is about giving and supporting our local community.

“Saffery Bournemouth are going to match the number of presents donated by the team, so that more children will receive a gift from Santa.”


Lighthouse launches Big Christmas Appeal aiming to create life-changing experiences

Lighthouse in Poole has launched this year’s Big Christmas Appeal.

Lighthouse Poole logo

The initiative is aiming to raise money to enable it to give away thousands of free and discounted tickets to children, families and other groups who experience disadvantage.

“It’s more important than ever this year, in the current economic climate, to ensure no one misses out on the benefits that arts, music and theatre can add to their lives, for education, understanding, entertainment and enjoyment,” says Fundraising and Ticket Sales Manager Tom Shallaker.

“This Christmas, every donation will help us to give even more local families who are experiencing disadvantage the chance to visit Lighthouse next year.”

Last year’s Appeal generosity raised £13,000, comfortably exceeding the target of £10,000, and meant that Lighthouse was able to give 2,238 tickets this year to groups and good causes.

One of the many groups that has benefitted has been Time Out, a Dorset-based SEND Parent and Carer support group. Thanks to the appeal,

“We were able to offer a group of parent carers the opportunity to enjoy a night out at SIX, which was the hottest ticket in town this year and the most successful show in the history of Lighthouse,” says Tom.

“It was a rare night out for people who normally wouldn’t think about  treating themselves to a sow, especially without the kids they spend all day and night looking after,” says Andy Walker, from Time Out.

Another group to benefit was the Poole and District Children’s Cancer Fund, which will be bringing families of children with cancer to see this year’s pantomime Aladdin.

“The Appeal has helped to subsidise relaxed performances meaning that people who benefit from a more relaxed environment, including those with an autism spectrum condition or learning disability, can join us and enjoy a show in comfort,” adds Tom.

Charities and organisations from veterans’ associations to homeless charities and shelters for victims of domestic violence have all been offered the chance to visit Lighthouse for a night of live music, stand up comedy or a theatre show.


The Dolphin Poole announces programme of Christmas workshops and activities


The Dolphin in Poole has announced a programme of Christmas events.

The Dolphin Poole

The Poole destination will welcome chosen charities, pop-up workshops, and festive services to the centre to provide a festive experience for the community.

A Christmas Virtual Charity Shop, raising funds for Diverse Abilities, features on The Dolphin Street Market across the first weekend of December and will raise awareness of the ‘International Day of People with Disabilities’.

An immersive Christmas pop-up, Santa’s Artic Adventure, will bring a Christmas wonderland to the centre where children can enjoy festive games and crafts.

The event begins at The Dolphin Poole on Saturday 2nd December and will be open to visitors for 14 days throughout the month, including Christmas Eve.

Additionally, Maggie The Seaside Baker will host a festive biscuit decorating session on Saturday 9th December in GATHER for children and families alike to enjoy, with proceeds also being donated to Diverse Abilities.

A present wrapping service operated by Diverse Abilities features from Thursday 21st to Sunday 24th December to help shoppers wrap up Christmas just in time for Santa’s arrival.

Shoppers can benefit from their gifts being wrapped by volunteers before they leave the centre, saving busy mums and dads the hassle and raising money for charity too.

John Grinnell, Centre Manager of The Dolphin Poole, said, “We are delighted to have such a varied and exciting Christmas offering for visitors to enjoy throughout December.

“We know that families will be visiting the centre to browse for those must-have Christmas gifts and all-important stocking fillers, but as part of our reimagining of the space beyond retail services, we are committed to bringing a series of memorable experiences to Poole this season. We are confident that this year’s events will prove hugely popular in our community.”


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