Company’s new scheme to give back is under way

Michael Hollands from Car Finance Company with Jane Muir founder member of Empowering 2 Change at the Recovery Cafe, Portsmouth.
Michael Hollands from Car Finance Company with Jane Muir founder member of Empowering 2 Change at the Recovery Cafe, Portsmouth.
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VOLUNTEERS at an addiction recovery charity were handed an application pack by staff from a Portsmouth-based company that will enable them to bid for up to £10,000.

For more than a year, The Recovery Cafe in Kingston Road, Portsmouth, has been providing support to people recovering from addiction and will be applying to The Car Finance Company (TCFC) through its Friends in Finance scheme.

The scheme has been set up by Mark Smith, the founder of the firm, who is offering £14,000 for local charities to bid for, which has been topped up to £20,000 by other local companies.

‘The idea of businesses putting something back into the community and helping vulnerable people is great,’ said Jane Muir, founder member of the charity.

The Recovery Cafe is one of the first to apply for the funding, which will be split into three separate amounts which charities can bid for, the largest being £10,000.

If successful, volunteers at the charity are hoping to set up a new housing project aimed at getting homeless recovering addicts into their own accommodation and using the skills of others to improve those homes.

‘It’s going to be addicts doing it for themselves,’ added Jane.

‘They will be the guys who are going in and making those houses more habitable safer, and cleaner and that will mean people are more likely to stay in recovery.’

Michael Hollands, marketing manager at TCFC, was at The Recovery Cafe to hand over the application pack.

He said: ‘I think the fact that they are helping those who are experiencing a very tough situation is really important and it’s a great thing that Jane’s doing.’

All staff at The Car Finance Company will have the chance to vote for the charities they think should receive the funding, before a panel of 13 judges, also made up of staff members, will decide on the final recipients in June.

Ruth Dash, volunteer at the charity, said: ‘It’s not just managers, they’re letting their staff get involved which is really good.’

The judges’ final decisions will be announced in early June.

Car finance...

THE FRIENDS in Finance scheme is offering up to £20,000 to charities and community groups.

Groups and individuals can apply for the cash, which is being led by The Car Finance Company.

The North End-based firm has put up £14,000 for projects to apply for, with the pot being boosted to about £20,000 with further contributions from local businesses Coffin Mew, KPMG and Shoesmiths.

Charities and community groups wanting to bid for money need to apply for an application pack. Staff from The Car Finance Company will then decide who gets the cash.

The Car Finance Company was founded in 2007 from the Southsea bedroom of managing director Mark Smith.

It was set up for one simple reason – to help provide finance to those with poor credit. The firm now has more than 30,000 customers, and is growing every day with more than 350 employees and 100 of these employees are based at the head office in Portsmouth.

Because the city has played such an important part in TCFC, it was an easy decision to focus the project within the Portsmouth community.

That is why Mark and TCFC are now keen to give back to projects in the area.

To apply for funding for your charity or community group, you will need an application pack. To get a pack, visit
Alternatively, write to Friends in Finance, The Car Finance Company, 47-51 Kingston Crescent, Portsmouth, PO2 8AA.

Please provide a name, e-mail address and postal address.

Application packs must be returned to The Car Finance Company by Monday, April 27, 2015.