Business Charity Awards: Outstanding Employee - Winner: Matthew Fitch, Laing O'Rourke

For an individual in a company who has made an exceptional contribution to charity with the support of his or her employer

Matthew Fitch
Matthew Fitch

Who is the winner?
Matthew Fitch joined Laing O’Rourke in 2011 and works as a civil engineer. He has tirelessly supported charities in the UK and overseas.

What did he do?
As a student on a placement with the engineering firm, Fitch managed to increase the earnings of his university’s rag team from £10,000 a year to £100,000 after becoming its trustee. While still at university, he ran the El Salvador Project, helping to raise £30,000 to provide toilets and washing facilities for families in El Salvador, something he still helps with. Since joining Laing O’Rourke, he has provided business advice to two social enterprises: Roots Upcycle, which teaches woodwork skills to disabled people; and the Bounce Back Project, which offers employment opportunities in painting and decorating to former offenders. He also led a design team at the technical design charity Engineers for Overseas Development in Uganda. In addition, he is helping young engineers lacking in either design or construction experience to redevelop the Kumi Hospital buildings in Uganda. He has started and chairs the London and South East Group of the international humanitarian organisation RedR UK, which provides skilled workers in disaster areas.

Why did he win?
Matthew has used his skills to support numerous charitable causes over a number of years. His efforts have made an immediate difference to the lives of people both in the UK and overseas.

What did the judges say?
Nick Ockenden, head of the Institute for Volunteering Research, said: "A fantastic example of how committed employees can use their skills to benefit communities round the world."

Highly commended
Christopher Brown, Laing O’Rourke

Finalists
Val Breakwell, Compass Group
Clare Cox, Channel 4
Liz Lowe, Coca-Cola

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