Hopkins Homes’ Suffolk Charity of the Year handed £7,000 prize

Reach Community Projects named Hopkins Homes’ Suffolk Charity of the Year and handed £7,000 prize

Haverhill based Reach Community Projects has been named the winner of the inaugural Hopkins Homes Suffolk Charity of the Year public vote and will receive the top donation of £7,000.

The campaign received more than 2,300 votes from Suffolk residents who chose their favourite charity from a shortlist of seven. A £10,000 donation from Hopkins Homes will be shared between the three charities receiving the most votes. The vote is part of the £500,000 Hopkins Charitable Fund launched last year. The fund will see the developer donate half a million pounds to charities and causes throughout Suffolk, Norfolk and Cambridgeshire over the next five years.

Reach Community Projects aims to tackle poverty in and around Haverhill, providing practical and emotional support to those struggling with debt, low income, homelessness or housing problems.

The charity has recently embarked on an ambitious refurbishment project to provide more meeting rooms at its Resource Centre off Gloucester Road. The £7000 donation will be spent on furthering this project.

IHAG and the Halesworth Volunteer Centre came second and third in the vote and will receive donations of £2,000 and £1,000 respectively. Additionally, Hopkins Homes will donate £250 to each of the four remaining charities in support of the excellent work they carry out across the region – Access Community Trust, Bury Women’s Refuge, 4YP and Bury Drop In.

Henry Wilson, Projects Director at Reach Community Projects said: “We are over the moon to win the public vote, the other shortlisted charities do great work locally too so we were very touched by the support people gave to us. The Resource Centre is a vital tool in the fight against poverty in our area and the £7,000 will make a significant difference to our refurbishment project, in turn enabling us to assist more local people. Through the Resource Centre we are able to offer a range of services including money advice, a foodbank, starter packs and client aid which provides essential items to those in need.

 “We are very grateful to Hopkins Homes for including us in the vote and we very much enjoyed the opportunity to further raise awareness of our work in the area.”

Joshua Hopkins, Land Buyer at Hopkins Homes said: “It’s an honour to present the cheque to the top three charities. There was a fantastic level of local engagement with the vote. All seven of the shortlisted charities offer support and assistance to some of the region’s most vulnerable residents and we are proud that our donations will help them to continue the superb work they do across Suffolk.

“Hopkins Homes is committed to building strong communities as well as providing much needed new homes across the region, we hope that the charities continue to thrive and we look forward to hearing more about the work they do.”

The shortlist for the vote was compiled with support from the Suffolk Community Foundation. Stephen Singleton, Chief Executive, Suffolk Community Foundation said: “As our partnership with Hopkins Homes continues to evolve it has been wonderful to play our part in this latest innovation in their grant making. The end result has been twofold, to see some incredible important local organisations receive the funding they so desperately need, but also through the storytelling surrounding this project both in print and online, to raise awareness about the need here in Suffolk and the important work of our Voluntary Sector as a whole.”

Hopkins Homes recently received a national award for Best Medium Housebuilder and has developments across Suffolk.