How The Perfume Shop raised £1 MILLION for Alzheimer’s Research UK
Gill Smith, Managing Director of The Perfume Shop
Last year, long-term partner of Alzheimer’s Research UK, The Perfume Shop, not only celebrated its 30 birthday,but also reached the staggering fundraising milestone of £1 million for life-changing dementia research. Gill Smith, Managing Director at The Perfume Shop, reflects on her highlights from the partnership so far…
We’ve been with Alzheimer’s Research UK since 2016, and in those eight years we’ve taken every opportunity to wave the flag and raise much-needed funds for dementia research. I feel very proud of my colleagues for the effort they’ve put into supporting the charity over the years. We’ve shaken buckets, tied ribbons, pedalled bikes, baked cakes, blown up hundreds of balloons, and even jumped out of planes. You name it, one of us has probably done it!
Thinking back over the years of our partnership, two fundraising memories spring to mind. The first was during World Alzheimer’s Month in September 2021. Customers could add a personalised ribbon to their perfume, online or within minutes in store, with a portion of the proceeds supporting the charity. These we so popular that we continue to sell personalised ribbons in aid of Alzheimer’s Research UK at special times of the year. The other is Driving Down Dementia, which saw our Area Managers tour from store to store, accepting dares and posting carpool karaoke clips on social media. I can’t say I heard too many angelic voices, but it brought plenty of laughs!
At the end of 2021, we had raised a fantastic £800,000 for dementia research. This led us to set an ambitious target to reach £1 million in 2022. I was amazed by the enthusiasm of our teams and the generosity of our customers, helping us to raise £200,000 in less than a year and reach our goal.
Dementia has impacted many of my colleagues in some way, with many knowing close family or friends with the condition. Unfortunately, up to 70% of informal carers are women. And with an 80% female workforce, we know that many of our Perfume People resonate with the cause and want to take action to help end the heartbreak of dementia.
My hope for the future of dementia is to be able to treat it through medication, just like we can for other serious health conditions, like cancer. With promising new drugs for people living with dementia in the pipeline, we want to continue raising as much money and awareness as we possibly can to help Alzheimer’s Research UK make that a reality.
The money raised by The Perfume Shop has helped take us closer to a world free from the fear, harm and heartbreak of dementia. One of the many projects they’ve helped to fund includes our Infoline. This service answers the public’s questions about dementia, the latest research, how to get involved in studies, and where to go for additional support. We look forward to continuing our partnership with The Perfume Shop and supporting their incredible fundraising journey.