CHARITIES dealing with domestic and sexual abuse, youth homelessness and Alzheimer’s are among those picked by staff to receive nearly £400,000 from a big Hampshire employer.

Staff at Zurich’s Whiteley base chose the good causes that should benefit from a package worth more than £2million to organisations around the UK.

Fareham-based domestic and sexual abuse charity Yellow Door, youth homelessness charity Step By Step, counselling service for young people the Moving On Project and the Alzheimer’s Society all received £30,000. Food poverty charity Food Cycle also received more than £15,000.

Farnborough-based performing arts charity Spotlight UK received £20,000 for a youth ambassador to provide a food, toy, and clothes bank, and deliver a range of activities and emotional support to children from service families and other groups.

Step By Step and the Orchard Dementia Centre also received £20,000 each. The Orchard Dementia Centre will use the donation to purchase new blackout blinds and room dividers, as well as a sensory table and touch screen for the centre.

The insurer has also introduced a charity donation platform, MyImpact, which allows employees to make regular or one-off donations to partner charities. Each donation will be matched by ZCT. For every 10 hours of volunteering recorded on the platform, employees will receive £100 to donate to their favourite charity partner.

Jayne Bristow of Step By Step said: “Step By Step are proud to have been chosen as a charity partner for Zurich Community Trust. The support means not only funding that we desperately need but support in the form of training which is vital to allow staff to develop and Zurich challenges which have in the past been super fun and rewarding.

“This support means we can help provide young people with a safe space to call home and the tailored support they need to break the cycle of homelessness for good and allow young people to reach their full potential.”

Steve Grimmett, head of Zurich Community Trust, said: “The cost-of-living crisis is affecting both households and charitable organisations, with inflation and high energy costs meaning budgets must now stretch further. Zurich Community Trust is proud that these donations will help to ease the pressure for charities in Hampshire, picked by Zurich employees."