OVO Gives Back 2018/19: What a year it’s been!

We’ve already ticked off one of the biggest resolutions we had for this year  – and 2019 isn’t even over. We teamed up with our OVO Gives Back partners and gave them a helping hand to change the world. Working with children to develop their literacy skills, creating homes for young homeless people, reducing plastic waste, and celebrating local nature. Phewf.


1 August 2019

A big thumbs-up from us

Here’s how – together with an OVO Foundation grant and the help of some super committed volunteers – our OVO Gives Back partners 2018/19 brought the world closer to how it should be. 

Avon Gorge and Downs Wildlife Project created a Granny Downs Tree Trail and have increased their online presence with a brand-new website. Between June 2018-2019, 17,336 people took part in their educational programmes – and this includes 2,338 children from local schools and playschemes. Hats off.

Their thoughts?
“This funding has enabled us to reach out across the city, welcoming a diverse audience to the Avon Gorge and Downs who would not normally access the site. Throughout the year we have been able to work with refugees from Syria and Iraq and with children facing family difficulties…As an environmental organisation, it has been great to make this connection with OVO, a green energy provider within our Bristol community.”

By beating the drum about their Refill Campaign and app, City to Sea attracted over 500 new businesses to sign up at Refill Stations over the last year – and that’s with over 580 Stations in Bristol alone. Imagine: if all of these stations are used just once a week, City to Sea will save 361,920 plastic bottles from entering our waste streams. And as if that wasn’t enough, they’ve also held volunteering days to clear up their local environment and beaches, with friends from OVO.

Their thoughts?
“Being an OVO Gives Back organisation has been a fantastic opportunity for City to Sea, particularly being supported right here in Bristol by another organisation working to protect our planet…The Refill Campaign has a very simple call to action, and OVO has helped us to spread the word that avoiding single-use plastic bottle is possible, especially now with the hundreds of Refill Stations across Bristol offering free tap water.”

A shipping container has been magically transformed into a sleeping pod by Help Bristol’s Homeless – creating one more home for those struggling with homelessness in Bristol. This new pod (with kitchen and bathroom facilities) will help provide locals with a secure and safe environment – they’ve already supported 450 single night-stays in the last year.

Their thoughts?
“Being an OVO Gives Back nominated charity has not only given us money in the bank but support from OVO employees to volunteer their time with us. It’s given us the opportunity to increase our provision in terms of more flexible accommodation that’s more suited to young homeless people.”

With the support of about 450 volunteers plus a bunch of us from OVO, Literacy Pirates helped 150 children improve their reading and writing. You can take a look at how these ‘young pirates’ performed their creative writing by watching this short film – screened at a local cinema in front of an audience of 350 people.

Their thoughts?
“Having the chance to speak with OVO staff and have some of them volunteer with us was a fantastic bonus and allowed us to grow a supportive and engaging relationship. Always open and communicative, OVO actively asked about our needs throughout the year and responded to them. For example, OVO staff held a Christmas book collection to help us stock the library at our brand new learning centre. The OVO team were also present at our celebration event, lending first-hand support to the young people on our programme. Thanks for a fantastic year, OVO!”

As always, we’ve immensely enjoyed working with our OVO Gives Back partners – and we’re ready to start it all over again next year. We can’t wait.

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