Bapcor NZ recognised for Gumboot Friday scrap battery campaign

In News3 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineApril 14, 2022

Bapcor New Zealand has won the Most Innovative Community Impact Programme for the Gumboot Friday Scrap Battery Collection Campaign at the AAAA Excellence Awards.
The campaign generated more than $200,000 to support mental health programmes in New Zealand via Mike King’s I Am Hope charity.
Greg Wards, channel manager at HCB Technologies, part of the Bapcor New Zealand family, says the achievement means a lot to the company because it is making a difference.
“The award shows us that what we are doing is making a genuine difference, and affirms that we want to do more,” he says.
Wards says one of reasons the initiative was so successful was because it resonated with Bapcor customers and the public alike.
“We really tried to use our position of having a vast national network of company-owned stores and customer stores. We have about 100 company-owned stores, the trade suppliers, the B2B stores, and then we’ve got approximately 160 stores that are Battery Towns and Shock Shops, and they all participated in the campaign,” he says.
“All of our corporate clients and customers got on board as well, so we made this network of hundreds and hundreds of sites where you could go and drop a battery and it would find its way to us to include in the overall total.”
Mental health is an important issue for the team at Bapcor, so the award means a lot, Wards says.
The company has a dedicated working group called the Community Grants Squad, who meets three or four times a year and distributes funds to four or five different charities at a time. The funds are drawn from scrap batteries and other metals.
“Mental health is such an important issue, there is a lot of consciousness around it at the moment.
“Mental health challenges were there before Covid obviously and same with the pressures on mental health services. But then you dump in a pandemic, upend people’s lives, people are losing their incomes… and for young people, their sense of the future got dampened down.
“It’s important that mental health remains an ongoing conversation, and we need to make it easy for people to ask for support.”

 From left: Martin Storey, Eexecutive GM, Bapcor NZ; Craig Fowler, HCB Technologies business manager; Jeff Mills, Bapcor product manager.