Doncaster railway infrastructure specialist VolkerRail is one First-Class fundraiser.

The company, which employs over 1,100 people, began its giving to North Anston-based Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice in 2012 and last month made its latest donation - for a hefty £14,836.

The money has been raised through its parent company VolkerWessels UK’s internal staff safety campaign, Close Call. It encourages all employees - from office staff to rail-side workers - to report any situation which could potentially cause an accident or affect health and safety. 

Each year, VolkerWessels UK donates £1 to charity for every close call raised. Half the money is donated to the Samaritans and businesses in the group distribute the rest to their chosen charities, in proportion to the number of ‘close calls’ their employees raised.

Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice care for children and young adults with life-shortening conditions, along with their families, across South Yorkshire, North Derbyshire, North Nottinghamshire and parts of North Lincolnshire.

The hospice is heavy and light rail networks specialist VolkerRail’s chosen charity for Close Call donations and the company also donates a further £1 to the hospice for every resolved call.

Stuart Webster-Spriggs, VolkerRail HSQES director, said: "VolkerRail prioritises the safety of all employees and stakeholders interacting on its work sites. Our ‘close call’ scheme empowers our teams and creates a proactive approach to safety, which reduces the number of accidents and incidents in the workplace.

"Every close call reported and closed is another potential accident and incident prevented."

He added:  "The support and facilities provided by Bluebell Wood is vitally important. These donations and our long-standing relationship with the charity helps to ensure their work continues to support families in their time of need."

Last year, 35,700 ‘close calls’ were reported across VolkerWessels UK, raising  £17,875 for the Samaritans and £6,689 for Bluebell Wood, with VolkerRail adding an additional £8,147 to the hospice’s donation.

Bluebell Wood’s Regional Fundraiser Eleanor Hughes said:  "The hospice’s relationship with VolkerRail continues to go from strength to strength. Its employees are fantastic. They not only fundraise for us, they also take part in our events and give their time to volunteer at the hospice, too.

"It costs £5.1M just to keep the hospice’s doors open. That is almost £14,000 every day - the same amount VolkerRail have donated to us this year alone. We want to say a huge thank you to everyone at VolkerRail, who over the last 11 years have raised a staggering sum for which we are hugely grateful."