YBS wins Business of the year in double success at prestigious charity awards
Yorkshire Building Society was a double winner, including being named Business of the Year, at the Third Sector Business Charity Awards 2016.
The Society won the top prize as well as winning the Employee Engagement Initiative of the Year category for its colleague volunteering programme.
The awards scheme recognises the outstanding contribution UK businesses make to good causes.
Yorkshire Building Society was selected by a panel of Third Sector judges as being the best example of a business that has “excelled in helping the wider community by embedding a culture of supporting charitable causes at all levels”.
In 2015 the Society introduced a policy that allows colleagues to take up to 31 hours of paid volunteering leave each year supporting a variety of different charities and good causes.
Yorkshire Building Society’s Head of Corporate Affairs, Tanya Jackson, said: “As a mutual organisation owned by our members we believe that society really matters and that we can make a tangible difference in our local communities.
“This is something that we have been doing for over 150 years and I would like to thank all the Society’s colleagues and members who have contributed to this success through our varied charity and community work.
“It was an honour to be able to collect the awards on behalf of everyone at Yorkshire Building Society and it is fantastic recognition of the good work that we all do across the country.”
Andy Hillier, Chair of Judges for the Business Charity Awards, said: "Yorkshire Building Society's charitable efforts really stood out this year. Not only have the Society’s staff and customers raised more than £870,000 for Marie Curie, but its excellent volunteering policy allows staff members to take up to 31 hours of paid volunteering, benefiting many local good causes. Yorkshire Building Society is a shining example of good corporate social responsibility and many companies could learn from its example."
To encourage colleagues to use their new 31-hour allowance, Yorkshire Building Society launched specific skills-based volunteering programmes. These include supporting local schools with activities such as employability workshops, mentoring university students, supporting older people who may be affected by loneliness and providing more than 3,100 hours of support for Marie Curie.
Colleagues can also use their volunteering allowance to support their own chosen good causes.
More than 35 per cent of the Society’s 4,600 colleagues participated in the volunteering programme in 2015 compared with 25 per cent in 2014, and 11,800 hours were donated in 2015.
The Society has also launched its most ambitious fundraising campaign, in aid of Marie Curie, with an aim to raise £500,000 in two and a half years which was smashed within 18 months. A new target of raising £1m by the end of 2016 is now in place.
The Marie Curie fundraising campaign success has been achieved through activities in the Society’s offices, branches and agencies with colleagues taking part in various challenges such as the Yorkshire 3 Peaks and even setting a Guinness World Records title after 667 Society colleagues took part in the largest cream tea party in multiple venues.
Yorkshire Building Society Charitable Foundation has also donated more than £6m since 1999 to local charities and good causes.
For more information about Yorkshire Building Society’s Corporate Responsibility programme, please visit www.ybs.co.uk/societymatters, phone 0345 166 9271 or call into one of our branches.