Building society’s scheme is big success at charity awards

Yorkshire Building Society colleagues volunteering.
Yorkshire Building Society colleagues volunteering.

Kind-hearted colleagues at the Lancaster branch of Yorkshire Building Society have played a part in helping it win two top awards for helping communities.

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 the Employee Engagement Initiative of the Year category for its colleague volunteering programme.

Colleagues from the Lancaster branch of Yorkshire Building Society helped contribute to the award win by volunteering their time helping in the local community such as at St Johns Hospice and have also raised £437 for Marie Curie since the beginning of 2015.

The branch also donated £1,400 from Yorkshire Building Society Charitable Foundation to good causes in and around Lancaster in the last year.

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”.

Yorkshire Building Society’s Lancaster branch manager, Joanne Varey, 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 we’re really proud to have played our part through helping people in Lancaster.”

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. 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.

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, please visit www.ybs.co.uk, phone 0345 166 9510 or call into one of our branches.