The raffle was organised by Jodie Blackwell, of Jodie Fern Jewellery, and Jo McGaffin, of Jolie Carte which creates bespoke and custom wedding and corporate stationery and greetings cards, who wanted to help their local NHS Trust during the pandemic.
The Leamington businesswomen reached out to their local small business community appealing for donations, and were overwhelmed as 60 firms came forward to offer prizes.
They included everything from food hampers and meals out to beauty treatments, fitness sessions and craft workshops as well as a whole host of handmade items – attracting hundreds of people to take part in the raffle.
The money raised will help support the South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust’s front line staff, providing them with hot drinks, snacks, healthy food and toiletries to help boost energy levels and morale as they work to fight coronavirus.
Jodie said: “Jo and I know each other through our businesses and wanted to do something to help the NHS at a local level during this difficult time.
“Our local Trust is also close to my heart as my dad Gary is currently undergoing chemotherapy at Warwick Hospital, so it seemed especially important to do something for the incredible NHS staff.
“Because of the guidelines around social distancing and the fact both of our businesses are prominent online, we decided an online raffle through a JustGiving page would be the easiest way to fundraise.
“We attend a lot of local markets and networking events and are well-connected with small businesses across the area, so we sent out an appeal for raffle prizes.”
Jo added: “It is an incredibly challenging time for businesses big and small, so we were overwhelmed by the number of people who came forward to offer their support.
“We had some fantastic prizes donated, and it is thanks to this that we were able to raise the amount that we did.”
Monica Fogarty, chief executive of Warwickshire County Council, has praised Jodie, Jo and all of the businesses who donated prizes for their efforts.
She said: “This is a perfect example of the community spirit that we are seeing right across the county from individuals and businesses.
“These are really testing economic times but still businesses are finding the time to use their strengths to come together to support others in any way they can because they realise this is impacting us all.
“It really shows that there is such as thing as society and it is really heart-warming.”