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News Story:

Employee volunteering


Businesses across Europe are recognised for improving the employability skills of people who face barriers to work at the European Employee Volunteering Awards final ceremony.

On 17 March winners of the first European Employee Volunteering Awards 2011 were announced at an exclusive reception held at The Business Design Centre, London.

Business in the Community developed the Awards scheme with 21 European partners in recognition of the European Year of Volunteering 2011.

Business has a positive role to play in tackling issues in society. Employee volunteering not only engages and inspires workforces, but can help improve the employability skills of people facing barriers to work. According to the Statistical Office of the European Union, over 20 million people are currently unemployed in Europe with social exclusion and poverty rates increasing as a consequence of this

Over 250 entries from 21 countries across Europe were received. The European Employee Volunteering Awards were co-funded by the European Commission and kindly supported by Alliance Boots, Hewlett Packard and Tata Consultancy Services.

The awards ceremony included a poster exhibition of the 60 national award winners and the launch of a Case Study report showcasing best practice from across Europe.

Awards were given for the following 5 categories: Large Company, Small Company, Innovation, Newcomer and Public Authority.

Winners are:

  • Large Company Winner: Koç Holding  (Turkey)
  • Small Company Winner: NORSYS (France)
  • Innovation Winner: MITIE Group (United Kingdom)
  • Newcomer Winner: Abbott (Ireland)
  • Public Authorities Winner: Magistrate of the City of Wiesbaden, Office for Social Affairs (Germany)

Awards will be presented by:

  • Ornella Barra, Chief Executive, Pharmaceutical Division, Alliance Boots
  • Brendan Burns, Member of the European Economic and Social Committee
  • Sue Bird, DG Employment, Social Affairs and Equal Opportunities, European Commission
  • John MacDonald, Head of Task Force for the European Year of Volunteering 2011, European Commission.
  • Tata Consultancy Services
  • Hewlett Packard

BITC hopes that recognising these winning examples will help to increase the level of employee engagement across Europe, particularly during 2011, the European Year of the Volunteer and the UN Year of the Volunteer.