Perennial hopes Xmas card cash will help gardeners in forecast cold winter

As a forecast harsh winter approaches, Perennial's team of caseworkers is preparing to help horticulturists with help from funds raised by a range of Christmas cards and gifts which is now available online.

Over half a billion charity Christmas cards are sent in the UK each year. In 2014 Perennial received £110,000 from sales of their cards through Cards for Good Causes pop-up shops, the primary retail outlet for its range of Christmas cards, making it an important source of income for the charity. A selection of ‘Gifts that Transform Lives’ can be purchased to immediately help those in most need of support including buying a child a Christmas present, purchasing a ‘keep warm pack’ and making a donation to cover a month’s fuel costs for a family in crisis.
HTA chief executive and perennial trustee Carol Paris said: "Not only is Perennial offering a lovely selection of gifts and cards for gardeners and those who love the countryside this year, but we are also offering a corporate over-printing service. Companies who choose to support Perennial this Christmas can order cards in bulk and have them printed with their company logo and a personal message. We hope this will encourage many more people to support the only charity helping all horticulturists from every sector of the industry when times get tough."

At the recent HTA Garden Futures Conference, weatherman Bill Giles OBE predicted that due to the effect of the strong El Niño, we should expect November and December to be mild but stormy and January and February to be exceptionally cold.

Perennial sees an annual uplift in calls from those struggling to make ends meet during the winter, particularly the self-employed, whose wages are seasonal, and the elderly. The charity would like to appeal to everyone working in the sector to help spread the word about its services.
Perennial director of services Sheila Thomson said:"While forecasters are busy trying to predict the weather, we are focused on ensuring our clients are warm and well-fed this winter. We are keen to hear about anyone who feels unable to keep themselves safe this winter and are ready for increased numbers of calls from people who need our help."
Perennial has issued a case study on the effects of cold winters on horticulturists:

"During the last very cold UK winter in 2009/10 we were contacted by Mark, a tree surgeon who was worried about his family’s welfare. His wages had remained static for over a year but fuel prices were soaring and Mark was struggling to keep his wife and children warm. They were regularly waking up to ice on the inside of their cottage windows and the family were wearing as many layers as possible in an attempt to stay warm. A Perennial caseworker visited the family home, identified the cottage had space for a wood burner and arranged for quick installation, safeguarding Mark’s family for many winters to come.

"Perennial helps hundreds of families like Mark’s each year, providing bespoke solutions to clients until they are back on their feet. Help is provided by trained caseworkers in confidence and is completely free. Perennial’s services are often described as a ‘lifeline’. Many people don’t have enough money to cover their heating and food costs and caseworkers regularly see families with young children worried about Christmas. Here is how one client described the help they received over winter,

"Perennial lifted the burden of going into debt while benefits were sorted out, and we also had a grant to buy coal and a Christmas payment. We have stayed warm over the winter and having good food and a good Christmas has lifted our morale."

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

Pots and containers

Pots and containers

Superior propagation products can justify extra expenditure by providing precise cell fill, optimum root development and healthy plugs, writes Sally Drury.

Business Planning - Inflationary pressures

Business Planning - Inflationary pressures

How can horticulture businesses respond to Brexit-fuelled inflation? Neville Stein outlines the options.

Garden centre profile: Mappleborough Green Garden Centre

Garden centre profile: Mappleborough Green Garden Centre

Phase two of the redevelopment of the former Badger Nurseries has delivered rapid and impressive results, Matthew Appleby discovers.

Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Garden retail Top 100 GARDEN CENTRES

Our exclusive ranking of garden centre performance by annual turnover. NEW: 2016 listing just published

Garden Centre Prices

GARDEN CENTRE PRICES w/e 21 September 2016
GARDEN CENTRE PRICES w/e 24 August 2016

Pest & Disease Tracker bulletin 

The latest pest and disease alerts, how to treat them, plus EAMU updates, sent direct to your inbox.

Sign up here