Business Charity Awards: Corporate Foundation - Winner: Wates Giving

For a philanthropic foundation set up by a company that has given outstanding support to the charity sector

Wates Giving
Wates Giving

What is the foundation?

Wates Giving is the philanthropic foundation of the Wates family, which owns the construction company the Wates Group. Last year, the foundation received £1.4m to distribute mainly to educational, employment and community projects.

What did it do?

Employees of the construction firm are invited to propose national or local community projects for grants, and the trust match-funds employees' fundraising initiatives. Money awarded recently includes a £120,000 grant to fund 11 Business in the Community workshops across the country and £25,000 to the Changing Paths scheme at HM Prison Rochester to fund a stonemasonry apprenticeship workshop. The foundation also awarded £30,000 to Active Luton, a not-for-profit sport and leisure trust, to fund a grass-roots programme in swimming, diving and gymnastics.

What did it achieve?

A total of 2,500 students took part in Business in the Community workshops. Apprentice stonemasons who are soon to be released from HMP Rochester are due to start work at Winchester Cathedral and other venues. Active Luton has used its funding to employ two part-time diving coaches and was able to offer discounted places to young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

What did the judges say?

Juliet Silvester, head of CSR programmes at Fujitsu UK & Ireland, said: "This is a great example of employees being able to contribute suggestions. The foundation funds a large variety of projects and there is real employee engagement."

Finalists

- Nominet Trust

- Thomson Reuters Foundation.

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