WORKERS at a small office in Swindon have amassed a monumental 300,000 ring pulls to aid poverty-stricken children in the Philippines.
Staff at Openwork Market Solutions, based in Lydiard Fields business park, have been collecting the tops of tins of beans and cans of coke for the last three years after helping fund the building of a school made from disused shipping containers in 2010.
One employee in particular, Suzanne McCarthy, has gone the extra mile and managed to pull in more than 20,000 herself by roping in family and friends to hand in as many as possible.
The premise behind the collection of ringpulls is to provide those who live on a rubbish dump outside the capital city Manila with the materials to create items for sale, according to the manager of the company’s charity arm Openworks Foundation Sam Tesch.
“The Philippines Community Fund has been asking for ringpulls for part of their income generation programme, which providees jobs for people and allows them to maintain the school they run,” she said.
“There are children and their parents living and scavenging among the rubbish in dumps outside Manila and the PCF exists to support them by enabling them to make products they can sell from the scrap.
“We, as a part of the Zurich Community Trust, funded a £300,000 school made from disused shipping containers in 2010 and after that we continued to support them. Collecting ringpulls seemed like a great way of doing that and to date we have donated more than 300,000.
“The charity’s target is one million and our aim is to be the biggest contributor. Everyone in the company has got behind it and Suzanne is a star, she’s really taken it to heart.
“The way we look at it and what I always say is that a ringpull is worth 10p to the charity – would you throw 10p away? “If you see a ringpull think of it as 10p and give it to charity.”
Suzanne, 29, of the town centre said: “It’s such an easy thing to do because it’s something people just chuck away and it can make such a difference to these people out in the Philippines.
“I’ve got my family doing it and I’ve set up a Facebook encouraging people to donate. “If people want a box to put them in I mail it out to them and even go and pick boxes up in my own time. It’s not costing people anything.”
To find out more or to donate email Suzanne on email@example.com or visit www.facebook.