A CHARITY for the homeless has been helped by a Vanarama gift of a van and £10,000 donation. DENS is a charity which tackles homelessness and poverty across part of Hertfordshire, home territory for Hemel Hempstead-based leasing firm Vanarama.
DENS, which stands for Dacorum Emergency Night Shelter, was given a leased vehicle by Vanarama three years ago. DENS relies so heavily on the vehicle to help run its day to day operations, though, that it can’t risk driving an ageing van. So, when the time came to renew the lease, Vanarama offered to lend its’ support.
This meant that DENS could choose a new van and the leasing firm could reaffirm its links with the charity.
DENS chief executive Andrew Liversidge explained: “The van is in constant use here at DENS. One day it might be used to help collect donated items of furniture from across Dacorum to take to our furniture warehouse.
“The next day it will be used by our team to help move someone into Rent Aid accommodation and their first step into independent living. Whether it is used for this though, or collection and delivery of FoodBank donations, the vehicle is invaluable to DENS. We really would struggle to operate without it.
“Receiving a brand new van means we won’t have to worry about wear and tear on the old van and our staff and the people we help are unlikely to be left stranded by a vehicle breakdown. Thanks to Vanarama’s generosity, we are able to allocate funds to those who need it most, rather than paying for the cost of a new vehicle.”
As well as assisting DENS enormously in tackling day to day tasks, the organisation really benefits from the eye-catching branding on the van. “The charity sector, like any organisation, operates in a fiercely competitive sector. The fantastic livery on the van acts like a mobile billboard for DENS on its daily travels around the area,” says Andrew.
Vanarama has built a reputation for backing local charities with intrepid staff taking part in everything from sky dives to bike rides, cake sales to marathons, raising much-needed funds.
As managing director Andy Alderson explains, charity support is important to the company: “At Vanarama we believe that as a business grows, so does its responsibility to the community around it. So, seeing the amazing difference the DENS van makes to the charity and knock-on effect it has on the community is fantastic.”
The financing of the new DENS van comes hot on the heels of a £10,000 donation made by Vanarama to the charity. Vanarama boss Andy chose to make the donations after staff visited DENS premises and witnessed first-hand the incredible work the charity does, from finding the homeless places to stay to offering counselling and support to get them back on the right path.