Giving is good business for successful Anglesey husband and wife team

A successful husband and wife business couple from Anglesey have been honoured for their philanthropy.

Ken Grayson, the Managing Director of Gaerwen-based Peninsula Home Improvements and his wife, Lorraine, also a Director, believe in the value of sponsorship and supporting the arts and community-based activities as part of their business strategy.

As a result, they were highly commended at the awards ceremony organised by the Community Foundation in Wales (CFIW) at the Norwegian Church in Cardiff.

The aim of the Foundation, an independent charity, is to strengthen local communities by providing a permanent source of funding to grass roots projects.

The  recognition from the Foundation was the latest in a series of accolades for Peninsula, a family firm employing 22 people.

Their support for the arts has previously earned them praise from the Arts and Business Cymru organisation.

Recent examples of their generosity include sponsorship for talented young musicians via the William Mathias Centre, donating and installing new windows at the UK’s first Women’s Institute building in Llanfair PG and providing supporting various charity events.

The Foundation’s judges were particularly impressed with the way the couple had put corporate social responsibility at the heart of their business strategy.

A spokesperson for the Foundation said: “In today’s challenging economic market Ken and Lorraine have recognised how supporting communities can position the business ahead of its competitors and also be hugely rewarding for employees who get involved, as well as being immeasurably rewarding on a personal level.”

Lorraine explained: “Supporting local communities began with a small investment in a local chamber orchestra, Ensemble Cymru, which took classical music to retirement homes across the region.

“We built on the success of the project by supporting projects that harnessed the impact that the arts can have on changing peoples lives.

“Over the last 10 years Peninsula has either sponsored or donated to 11 arts based organisations, supporting community development like The Ucheldre Centre in Holyhead.

“As part of our strategy we have worked to widen access to disadvantaged groups, or invest in talent that is based in communities who would not otherwise be able to access specialist tuition through the Peninsula Scholarship programme with Canolfan Gerdd William Mathias.

“Another 14 partnerships with local organisations are ongoing, for example, the Hope House charity which Ken holds close to his heart.

“We have also been involved in the Eryri environmental education programme, recycling plastic door frames to build mini green houses, and we appeared on the BBC programme DIY SOS assisting a family facing the challenges of ill health to improve their home and living standards.

“Most recently Peninsula has helped fundraise for the new school for children with special needs Ysgol y Bont  in Llangefni.”

The couple are currently giving their time and advice to help organisations who stimulate and broker community investment, through workshops, and mentoring.

Ken added: “We are hoping that fellow business people in North Wales can see the value and reward in doing the same and realise that incorporating corporate social responsibility into your business model is a great idea on so many levels.

“We were naturally delighted that our work has been recognised by the Foundation and we hope it will inspire others to see the real value of philanthropy.”

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