Our Corporate Partner: Citi
We are proud to have been Citi’s London Charity Partner for 2020-2022.
Together, our original partnership fundraising target was £350k, with the aim to transform 178 lives by matching and training people with sight loss in London to guide dogs or volunteer sighted guides. The team at Citi managed to smash their target and raised over £416k, helping to make an even bigger impact.
Guide Dogs were chosen from a large field of applicants to become the bank’s new partner after being nominated by now-former Citi employee, Patrick Moran. Patrick, who had been at Citi for 20 years and is also a guide dog owner, has a form of sight loss known as retinitis pigmentosa.
Patrick said, “I’m incredibly pleased that Citi chose Guide Dogs to be their London Charity Partner, especially as I’m a beneficiary of the fabulous work that Guide Dogs deliver. Citi was an exemplary employer to me and the willingness to support both me and my guide dog, Yoda, means the world to me.”
Supporting people with sight loss in London
Throughout the partnership, the team at Citi participated in a range of exciting fundraising activities and challenge events, including the Royal Parks Half Marathon, the 24 Peaks Challenge, an Abseil down the ArcelorMittal Orbit, the London to Brighton bike ride and the London to Paris bike ride.
They also got involved in volunteering, including bespoke training in sighted guiding for employees. Employees even supported our life-changing work by being volunteer Puppy Raisers.
The incredible team at Citi smashed their fundraising target, meaning that they've helped us open up the world for more people with sight loss in London.
Not only that, but the partnership also supported Citi's Diversity, Equity and Inclusion objectives. It helped to raise awareness about the challenges of sight loss within the organisation, and helped facilitate conversations around inclusive technology and how Citi can further support employees and customers through an accessible environment and services.
And, as part of the partnership, Citi supported and followed the journey of a guide dog puppy, Theia, named by employees. Theia is now transforming the life of her human partner, Lorraine to live a more active and independent life.
Citi Employee Volunteering
The impact of corporate volunteering
At Guide Dogs, we value our corporate partners such as Citi, who provide not only vital funds for our life-changing work but also dedicated employee volunteers.
We benefit from the corporate volunteers' time, passion and expertise, and the volunteers get to learn about the challenges faced by people with sight loss. We're often told that volunteering with Guide Dogs makes an enormous and meaningful difference to their lives, as they get to see the real and tangible impact their support provides.
Corporate volunteering is beneficial for everyone. Companies value employee volunteering to learn new skills, connect teams, build loyalty and engage in funded projects. Employees benefit from giving back and having new experiences. For people with sight loss, volunteers' support is quite literally life-changing.
Guide Dogs provided employees at Citi with numerous volunteering opportunities, including the chance to become a sighted guide and support a member of their local community living with sight loss. One employee even became the volunteer Puppy Raiser for the Citi-supported guide dog puppy Theia.
William and guide dog puppy Theia
Former employee, William Jones and his family were the Puppy Raisers for Theia, the guide dog puppy who was named by Citi employees through a competition.
Theia is the third puppy that William's family has looked after. William commented, "Our first puppy Rose is now a working guide dog and it was great to have the opportunity to meet up with her and her owner last year to hear about the difference Rose is making in his life."
While Theia was in the care of William and his family, they supported her with socialisation and basic training. They would take Theia on regular walks concentrating on her recall. They also worked on behaviours such as obedience, teaching her to wait and exercise self-control around food.
Despite the challenges of training during Covid, Theia has now successfully qualified as a guide dog partnership. She is now helping her owner to live a more active and independent life!
William and his family are now Puppy Raising their fourth future life-changer!
Primary sponsor of our Paws on the Wharf art trail
Citi is also supporting us as the primary sponsor of our Paws in the Wharf art trail which is coming to Canary Wharf in spring 2024.
Find out more about the Paws on the Wharf art trail coming to Canary Wharf in spring 2024
Get in touch with our corporate partnerships team