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Matthew Good Foundation & John Good Group Celebrate Milestone

The Matthew Good Foundation a is grant-making charity formed by Hull-based business, John Good Group in 2011 has passed a major milestone of £1million given to non-profits since it was founded.

To celebrate, employees at John Good Group have voted for two Yorkshire-based charities; Clean Planet and HER Breast Friends to receive surprise donations of £5,000 each.

As the Matthew Good Foundation hits the milestone of giving £1million to good causes since their launch, they are putting the charities and non-profits they support at the heart of their celebrations. In December 2023, the Foundation entered a shortlist of its recent beneficiaries into an employee vote at the John Good Group. The winners, receiving £5,000 each, were picked from two categories important to the John Good Group’s philosophy: People and Planet.

The winner in the Planet category was Clean Planet, a charity set up by hobbyist diver, Stephen Smith, who lives near the mouth of the River Tees at the top of North Yorkshire.

Horrified by the amount of lost and abandoned fishing gear, termed “ghost gear,” which he discovered when diving around the coastline, he decided to take the problem literally into his own hands, removing and recycling the gear himself piece by piece.

Upon hearing that his charity had won the surprise donation, Stephen commented,

“I’m quite speechless, I wasn’t expecting that! Thank you for the donation, it will really help us. We do rely on the kindness of Foundations and things like that to keep us going, because we make no money whatsoever on this. Every penny that we raise goes into trying to remove this hazard from me the beaches and sea.”

The winner in the People category was HER Breast Friends is a small Hull and East Yorkshire-based charity supporting local people affected by breast cancer, offering practical help with advice, a wig bank and a bra bank, and emotional help with wellbeing days and group support from local peers. The charity has been supported for a number of years by DAN Shipping (a subsidiary of the John Good Group) employee Tracy Keenan-Smith.

Tracy, along with Michelle Taft, Executive Director of the Matthew Good Foundation and Adam Walsh, CEO of the John Good Group paid the team at HER Breast Friends a visit, where they surprised them with the good news.

Pam Trays, Chairman of HER Breast Friends commented,

“Thank you for this amazing donation! We are planning to move into our new, bigger premises next year and this will go towards helping us make them even better, providing more wellbeing services for people affected by breast cancer."

"Our new premises will allow us to deliver all of our current activities and services in a new dedicated space, including more rooms for our Buddleia Therapies and also for counselling sessions. We’re so grateful to Tracy for nominating us and to all the John Good Group employees who voted for us to receive this donation. Thank you so much!”

In the first year of the Matthew Good Foundation’s launch in 2011, it gave away a modest £2,111, but over the last twelve years, donations from the John Good Group and other donors have grown at pace. Today, the Foundation offers a complete range grants and support to small and local non-profits, empowering businesses and their employees to get involved. With close to £300,000 granted to hundreds of charities and non-profits in 2023, more than half of the £1million granted since 2011 by the Matthew Good Foundation was granted in the last three years.

Adam Walsh, CEO of the John Good Group said,

“£1million of donations have gone to amazing and heartwarming causes up and down the country and beyond."

"I’m delighted for all the present and former John Good Group colleagues who have played their part in this achievement, as it is them that direct much of the giving, facilitated by the Matthew Good Foundation."

“This celebration represents so much more than a number; it's a symbol of the positive change we can create for our communities and the environment when we put our collective minds to it. With the momentum provided by the Matthew Good Foundation, I’m confident that it will not be long until we are celebrating the £2million milestone!”

With the generous support secured from the John Good Group, the Mathew Good Foundation now has an upscaled strategic plan to improve conditions for the small non-profit sector.

Michelle Taft, Executive Director of the Matthew Good Foundation commented,

“In the current climate, the small but high-impact charities and non-profits like the ones we have supported with these surprise donations are vulnerable."

"They need our help more than ever to close the funding gap that exists between them and much larger charities. Many businesses now understand this, and the Matthew Good Foundation hopes to help more businesses develop highly impactful community programmes like that of the John Good Group.”


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