Dextra – the local light in the darkness

Keith Brownhill, CEO of the Dextra Group, outlined their efforts to support the NHS and food industries as well as thanking donors, such as Octopus Personnel and Screwfix, who are enabling Dextra to supply free PPE to local NHS, Care & key workers to BBC Radio Somerset this morning.

The UK’s largest privately-owned lighting manufacturer, Dextra Group, lighting manufacturer based in Gillingham, is certainly playing its part in the response to Coronavirus and has been prioritising orders for the NHS, NHS Suppliers and food production industries supplying both standard and bespoke products in as little as 24 hours from point of order.  They have also been producing PPE for local NHS and care workers.

Dextra Transport Lorry next to a sign which reads #NHS Thank you from Dextra - Dextra – local light in the darkness

Although the Group is facing a fraction of their normal turnover, with 60% of staff furloughed, they are prioritising NHS orders and food manufacturers wherever possible.  As an NHS supplier, they outfit anything from a corridor to a whole hospital with lighting, as well as all major supermarkets, and this demand is equally vital during the current situation.  Dextra are currently working hard to supply lighting for the pop-up supermarkets outside the Nightingale hospitals, with very tight deadlines, often a single day, to dovetail with the operational needs of the hospitals.

Row of Dextra Transport Lorries next to a sign which reads #NHS Thank you from Dextra - Dextra – local light in the darkness

Keith explained, “It’s great to be able to be there.  A lot of manufacturers have shut, said they aren’t going to develop the product, but we are developing whatever we can, within a couple of days, to help wherever we can really… If we save one life or one person from getting the virus in the working staff, I think it will be worth it personally.”

PPE for local NHS & Care Staff - Dextra – local light in the darkness

Keith went on to talk about the fantastic work Dextra is doing in producing PPE for local health organisations, with donors like Screwfix and Octopus Personnel supporting their work.   Dextra has also completed and delivered a significant number of visor headsets and converted hard hats for local NHS, Care staff & key workers.  Dextra is making visors which were approved by local GP’s and they are now in use in 7 local GP practices.  The visors are different to the normal NHS specifications, the aim being to produce a protective visor which could be ‘wiped down’ to protect staff.  Dextra still currently have some visors & safety glasses for NHS & care workers, please email kbrownhill@dextragroup.co.uk directly with any PPE enquires.

PPE for local NHS & Care Staff - Dextra – local light in the darkness

Octopus Personnel is incredibly proud to have been able to support Dextra with the donation of hard hats for PPE and we thank all the Dextra workers for their continued efforts to support and protect the NHS.

Listen to the full interview on Breakfast on BBC Radio Somerset from 2:50:55 https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/p089k90y

 

Erin Belmont

About the author

I look after the marketing for Octopus – from the job adverts you see to the events we put on throughout the year.

I love being in the middle of the office, soaking up the lively dynamic atmosphere. The team at Octopus really care about our job searchers and clients and do everything they can to understand everyone’s needs and make intelligent and productive job matches. Their drive and fun loving spirit inspire me every day!

 

A Christmas Gift of Hope: School in a Bag

Christmas is traditionally a time of joy, family, faith, hope, and charity. For the second year in a row, Octopus Personnel are supporting ‘School in a Bag’ through our Christmas Gifts for our clients.  Rather than a hamper of Christmas goodies, which last but a moment on the lips, these bags will help provide an educational lifeline to bring children out of poverty.

At the Pop-Up Shop

The Octopus team were at the Yeovil School in a Bag pop-up shop last night to pack the 17 bags we have purchased. Liz talked us through the process and much festive fun was had!

Education for All

However, there is a very serious message here. According to UNICEF figures, almost 20% of the world’s child population will never attend school. This is a shocking statistic! Globally, there are millions of underprivileged children deprived of the essential resources to help them learn due to poverty and disasters.

On an individual basis, an opportunity to learn and an education for these children could be their lifeline to a future out of poverty. On a global scale, educating the future generation is a key force towards human development and global stability. In the immediate aftermath of a disaster, displaced children are often faced with trauma, grief and shock. The contents of a SchoolBag can therefore play an important role in the emotional rehabilitation process for children, allowing them to express their feelings by writing or drawing and help assist in the set-up of temporary schools to give these children a sense of normality.

Charity of Choice

Having supported School in a Bag throughout the year, it is so rewarding to see the children’s faces when they have received their bag and can actually begin learning again. (See our blog about previous bags here). We will be sending out the tracking numbers to our clients over the next week – so look out for yours!

Sandra Smart

About the author

I believe that recruitment is at the heart of a growing economy and that a different type of recruitment service, with honesty, efficiency and integrity at its heart, can benefit all. Octopus Personnel is the result of hard work, focus and commitment to that vision – to delivering consistently great results for our candidates and clients alike, as well as ensuring the agency is a vibrant, inclusive, inspirational place to work and develop rewarding careers.

Charity ‘Schoolinabag’ Bags arrive on location!

There was real excitement in the Octopus office today – the ‘SchoolinaBag’ bags we raised funds for have reached their school! We are so proud to see the children with their bags!

A massive Thank You to our clients, candidates, friends and visitors to our stand at The Gillingham & Shaftesbury Show. Raising the massive £1400.00 was amazing – our target was to be able to buy 20 bags but, due to your generosity, we have been able to buy 70 Schoolinabag Bags for under privileged children to receive.

According to UNICEF figures, 20% of the world’s child population will never attend school. School in a Bag is a simple solution created to help poor, orphan, vulnerable and disaster affected children throughout the world. Each SchoolBag is filled with stationery, learning resources and eating utensils that will enable a child to write, draw, colour, calculate, express themselves and above all learn. An education for these children could be their passport to a life out of hardship and poverty.

If you would like to get involved in supporting this fantastic charity, please visit http://www.schoolinabag.org/involved.

Authentic Style

About the author

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‘Muddy Matchers’

The Octopus Personnel team all took part in a ‘Pretty Muddy’ race for life event on Saturday in Poole to raise funds to help Cancer Research UK in the fight to beat cancer.

It’s a muddy obstacle course where they had to crawl under cargo nets and through tunnels, wade through pools of mud, conquer the high ‘A’ frame, navigate through the spiders web and the grand finale was the mudslide – ‘We all had a great time it was a great opportunity for us as a team to support and work together outside of the workplace and at the same time raise some money for a worthwhile cause’

Octopus would like to thank their clients, suppliers, candidates, friends and family that supported them so far they have raised over £700.00 – it’s not too late to make a donation – just go to their fundraising page http://ow.ly/UDdM30a9dQ0 – Octopus Personnel highly recommend anyone to take part they will certainly be participating again!

Sandra Smart

About the author

I believe that recruitment is at the heart of a growing economy and that a different type of recruitment service, with honesty, efficiency and integrity at its heart, can benefit all. Octopus Personnel is the result of hard work, focus and commitment to that vision – to delivering consistently great results for our candidates and clients alike, as well as ensuring the agency is a vibrant, inclusive, inspirational place to work and develop rewarding careers.

The Moon’s a Balloon

Octopus Personnel’s ‘balloon race’ at the Gillingham and Shaftesbury Show which resulted in hundreds of balloons being released up into the Dorset summer evening skies has raised the sum of £350 for the Cystic FibrosisTrust. This year’s winning entry took a south-easterly route, travelling more than 700 miles before finally ending up in the heartlands of Germany. The owner of Octopus, Sandra Smart who is pictured with her Team presenting a cheque to the Trust’s Mike Rutter at their Gillingham office said:

“Our balloon races seem to be becoming an annual tradition and we’re really thrilled to be able to support such an important and worthwhile cause”.

Sandra Smart

About the author

I believe that recruitment is at the heart of a growing economy and that a different type of recruitment service, with honesty, efficiency and integrity at its heart, can benefit all. Octopus Personnel is the result of hard work, focus and commitment to that vision – to delivering consistently great results for our candidates and clients alike, as well as ensuring the agency is a vibrant, inclusive, inspirational place to work and develop rewarding careers.

A Massive Well Done to the Boys

Octopus Personnel were delighted to sponsor a 110 mile Tandem Bike Ride which started on 13th October 2013. Rotarians Peter Cook and Roland Martin embarked on a sponsored Tandem ride around Dorset in aid of Diabetes UK and local Rotary charities. They decided on Diabetes UK as Peter is diabetic and being Rotarians they wanted to support local rotary charities as well.
They purchased the tandem in August and started training in early September, not being proficient cyclist they soon realised riding a tandem is an acquired art, not something you can just do!

They started from The Olive Bowl in Gilllingham at 10.15 am and cycled via Stalbridge, Sturminster Newton to Blandford stopping at Winterbourne Houghton for our first B&B. The second day they travelled to Wareham in lovely sunshine, what a difference to the torrential rain the day before. They reached Wareham via the Sika trail in the forest and arrived early at Sandford for their next B&B. On the third day, they cycled to Milton Abbas via Bovington camp and Bere Regis. The final day started in the rain leaving Milton Abbas at 10.30 am travelling through Bulbarrow and back to Sturminster Newton, Stalbridge and reaching Gillingham at 3.00 pm.

The total amount thus far is £2.550.00, with Gift Aid added could reach nearly £3,000.
Not having undertaken a challenge like this they have been surprised how well they would do.

Sandra Smart

About the author

I believe that recruitment is at the heart of a growing economy and that a different type of recruitment service, with honesty, efficiency and integrity at its heart, can benefit all. Octopus Personnel is the result of hard work, focus and commitment to that vision – to delivering consistently great results for our candidates and clients alike, as well as ensuring the agency is a vibrant, inclusive, inspirational place to work and develop rewarding careers.

OCTOPUS PERSONNEL PRESENT £500 CHEQUE TO CYSTIC FIBROSIS CHARITY

Last month a team of 5 employees called “The Dorset Dawdlers and Somerset Strollers”, from Markus Products in Wincanton, took part in “Great Strides 65” – a 40 mile walk from Guildford to Shoreham-By-Sea along the North Downs Way and Downs Link. The walk, to raise funds for the Cystic Fibrosis Trust took the team 13.5 hours to complete, starting at 7.00am and getting them a well-earned cup of tea at the seaside at 8.30pm that evening.

As it was not the first time the team had done the event, they decided to ask local businesses for their help this time. Octopus Personnel who supply all of Markus Products Agency staff requirements, were amazingly generous as the picture shows with Sandra Smart the owner of Octopus presenting Mike Rutter a cheque for £500 outside their Gillingham branch. From the left Sophie Cox, Ryan Smart, Mike Rutter, Sandra Smart, Ali Rutter, Ozzy the Octopus, Marsha Jones, and kneeling Michal Tenczynski and Edyta Kowal.

So far this year the team have raised £2990 for this very worthy cause, and over the past 2 events have raised in excess of £7400. It is not too late to sponsor the Dorset Dawdlers, please visit their web page on www.virginmoneygiving.com/team/dorsetdawdlerssomersetstrollers or come along to the Octopus Personnel stand at this year’s Gillingham and Shaftesbury Show on Wednesday 21st August where you can win a prize by taking part in Ozzy the Octopus’s balloon race.

Sandra Smart

About the author

I believe that recruitment is at the heart of a growing economy and that a different type of recruitment service, with honesty, efficiency and integrity at its heart, can benefit all. Octopus Personnel is the result of hard work, focus and commitment to that vision – to delivering consistently great results for our candidates and clients alike, as well as ensuring the agency is a vibrant, inclusive, inspirational place to work and develop rewarding careers.