Players from a Bournemouth IT consultancy retained their winners’ title at an annual charity beach volleyball tournament staged by property finance lender MSP Capital.
Team QuoStar saw off the challenge of 21 fellow competitors, a field more than twice as big as last year, beating the hosts 20-14 in the final to be crowned champions for the second summer running.
The event, held on Bournemouth beach, raised £15,000, to be split equally between Dorset-based hospice charities Julia’s House and Lewis-Manning Hospice Care.
It was part of MSP Capital’s community commitment and ESG strategy, Foundations for Better Futures.
Six-a-side teams of women and men competed in ten-minute ‘pool’ matches on four courts in the sand, with the top scorers going into a knockout stage starting with quarter finals.
Companies and organisations represented included NatWest, AFC Bournemouth, law firms, property developers and consultancies, recruitment specialists, accountants, estate agents, surveyors and internet marketers.
QuoStar Commercial Director Andrew Forder said after his team’s triumph: “We went into this year’s tournament with lots of confidence and we’ve had great fun. The event was organised so well and it provided genuinely entertaining volleyball to watch. Teams have obviously been training hard.”
Among other competitors, NatWest player and Portfolio Manager Ed Joffe said: “We got off to a shaky start but it was a great experience to be able to play volleyball barefoot on the beach. It was incredible to see all these teams playing and having fun while raising money for fantastic causes.”
The NatWest team was joined by Martin Edwards, Chief Executive of Julia’s House, who said: “I’ve never played volleyball before but I’ll try anything. The best fundraising always happens when people want to take part. It was amazing to see so many businesses pitching in and together raising so much money. Next year we should take over the entire beach from here to Boscombe!”
Martin added that the Julia’s House share of the funds raised from the day would equate to around three months’ worth of children’s hospice support from an individual nurse.
“We currently have around 160 families in our care and there is huge pressure on our service,” he explained. “Nurses form an amazing bond with children. As well as the clinical care they provide, they bring a lot of joy and happiness to the children. They are like extended family.”
Nicki Cluley, Corporate Partnerships Fundraiser for Lewis-Manning Hospice Care, said: “It costs us £2.4 million to run our charity each year and 80% of that has to be raised from donations. The beach volleyball tournament is an exemplary way to support us and the people in the community who need our services. We are so grateful for this event. It means so much to us.”
Chris Frost, Director of estate agency Frost & Co, a fellow fundraiser for both charities, said: “This year the MSP Capital tournament is bigger and better. The organisation has been outstanding, so professional. We support both the hospices all year round but this tournament is something special.”
Beach volleyball specialist Deep Dish helped organise and co-ordinate the tournament, supporting MSP Capital on the day with a compere, referees and DJ.
Deep Dish was founded by beach volleyball stars Chris Gregory and Jake Sheaf who have both represented Team England at the Commonwealth Games and Team GB at other international competitions and world tour events.
Jake was at the Bournemouth tournament throughout the day and presented the gold medals and trophy to Team QuoStar.
Heleen Maes, Marketing Manager for Deep Dish, said: “MSP Capital have done an incredible job to bring all these teams together. The vibe has been awesome. It’s very rare for a company to put on an event of this size that gets so many people together to have a great time and raise money for charity. It is one of the most important corporate events we are involved in each year.”
Summarising the success of the tournament, MSP Capital’s Joint Managing Director Paul Miracca said: “We have immense pride at seeing people compete so well and all for such great charities. We thank everyone who took part.”
After congratulating Team QuoStar on their tournament win, MSP Capital player and Senior Finance Analyst Tom Callaghan said: “This was one of the most fun networking events I have ever been to and it was a joy and privilege to help raise money for such amazing charities.”
MSP Capital’s launched Foundations for Better Futures earlier this year to encompass the lender’s ESG strategy and commitment to support its ‘people, community, industry and environment’.
Foundations for Better Futures is run by a community committee with a budget to co-ordinate staff fundraising for charities and other good causes.
To watch a short film about the tournament, visit https://mspcapital.co.uk/volleyball/.