How one company’s mistake helped a little boy fight cancer

Work for Good
Jul 14 · 5 min read

Running your own small business, you might become familiar with that ‘sinking stomach’ feeling. A lost shipment of products, a server issue that puts your site out of action, or a few not-so-complementary reviews — with no-one above you to help clean up the mess, any mistake feels like it could be the beginning of the end.

But faced with a pretty massive issue, one company decided to view their nightmare scenario as an opportunity, and ended up making a huge difference to a little boy’s life.

Lucy and Tamsin launched BundleBeds with the help of a Kickstarter campaign in 2017

Lucy and Tamsin are the women behind Bundlebeds, a range of super-comfy, fully-bundled rollout beds, designed for everything from sleepovers to camping out under the stars. Using only sustainable materials and ethical suppliers, Bundlebeds are a small business onto something great, with a social conscience and a growing base of happy customers.

BundleBeds are a comfy, no-hassle way to get a proper night’s sleep, wherever you are

But in Spring of 2019, they ran into a serious problem that tested their business and their sustainable business values.

“We’d made a mistake with a manufacturer and had a warehouse full of beds that weren’t right. We were going to have to sell them off at a loss to clear space and start again (and we didn’t want to just throw them away).”

Refusing to panic, Lucy and Tamsin decided to flip the situation on its head, and make lemonade out of their warehouse full of lemons. Rather than selling the beds at a loss, they decided to donate money from every ‘not quite right’ bed sold to charity, helping to shift their unwanted stock without wasting it, and doing some good along the way.

“We decided that we could make this a pro-active, positive decision, and we set up our contribution to the Ten for Ted campaign through Work for Good.”

They chose to donate through Solving Kids’ Cancer to help Teddy Mascaro, a gorgeous little boy who was diagnosed with high-risk neuroblastoma in April 2018.

Teddy was diagnosed with neuroblastoma in April 2018

Teddy lives in the UK, and needed treatment that was only available in the US — so inspired by the #Ten4Ted campaign his mum Emma had been running on social media, Bundlebeds joined in and donated £10 for every bed they sold in April.

They set up their donations through Work For Good, enabling them to donate and promote the campaign without having to worry about the legalities or admin involved in business donations.

In just 1 month, BundleBeds sleep-anywhere bed kits raised an incredible £1,290, adding to the fundraising pot that has now helped send Teddy to New York for his life saving treatment.

Teddy being a happy, bouncy toddler between hospital appointments

“We now look back on that month as the one where we raised the most money so far for a cause we believed in — rather than the one where we spent a lot of time sorting out a costly mistake!”

With help from hundreds of other incredible donors, by June Teddy’s family had managed to raise over £400k to help get him the treatments he needed. Teddy is now in remission, and continuing to get the support he needs to fight off cancer and grow up healthy and strong.

Teddy and his family at his final chemotherapy appointment in 2019

By fundraising through Solving Kid’s Cancer, Teddy’s parents were able to ensure that even with unpredictable costs and an uncertain future ahead, every penny raised would go to helping Teddy and children like him.

“All the money we raise and don’t need for New York will stay in a fund held by Solving Kids’ Cancer in case of relapse where we may need to access those funds. If not, after 5 years any excess will go to vital research into neuroblastoma to hopefully find more effective and less toxic treatments for children diagnosed with this terrible disease in the future.”

BundleBeds found a perfect solution to their manufacturing mishap

As a small company, Bundlebeds could easily have taken a big hit after their manufacturing mistake — but by flipping the script and finding a way to donate through their business, they managed to make it through April and contribute to a cause they believed in.

There’s a lesson here for anyone who’s had that ‘sinking stomach’ feeling — how many ‘failures’ could you turn into opportunities to do good?

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If you’re interested in doing good through your business, Work for Good could help you donate to charities through your work, just like Bundlebeds. Visit our website to find out more — we can help you get set up with a charity in just a few clicks, for free!

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Follow Teddy’s story on Instagram

Check out BundleBeds and their super handy bed kits