Over the next year we will focus our programmes in the areas of greatest need. Our key priorities include raising levels of educational achievement and aspiration; promoting enterprise; engaging businesses in employee volunteering; tackling unemployment among disadvantaged groups; and supporting businesses and communities to work together to achieve a more sustainable lifestyle for all.
Our Community Investment programme is committed to supporting UK businesses to develop a diverse, skilled and healthy workforce that actively volunteers in the community.
We promote volunteering as a core business value among South West businesses, many of whom have committed to give their employees time off to support local communities and schools.
Business Class is a Government-endorsed national programme that engages business to support young people facing social disadvantage by forming long-term partnerships with schools.
Ready For Work is a national programme that engages business to support those facing multiple barriers to work, particularly people who have experienced homelessness, into employment.
Step Up To Work helps unemployed 16-25 year olds develop the skills, self-esteem and confidence they need to get into work.
Get Ready/Bridge the Gap
Get Ready! is a Business in the Community-led partnership programme that complements Ready For Work, engaging business to provide early opportunities for people who have experienced barriers to employment to build skills and confidence for employment.
Each year our national Awards for Excellence recognize the achievements of companies that are at the forefront of responsible business practice.
Last year fifteen businesses in the South West were recognised for their outstanding achievements. These included five national Big Tick awards, two re-accreditations for previous Big Tick winners who demonstrated the continuing impact of their initiatives, and six Local Impact awards.
The 2014 Awards are now open for entries.
To find out more contact Nicola Prince
The national Business Connectors programme aims to increase the positive impact of business in local communities by harnessing expertise from business to tackle local needs.
In the South West, Business Connectors will help us scale up our support to local communities and address the urgent challenges on our doorstep, building capacity and brokering relationships at grass roots level in some of the South West’s most disadvantaged communities. Much of their work will involve leveraging private sector support for organisations focusing on local education, enterprise or employment.
At present we have seven connectors working in Bristol, Dorset, Devon and Wiltshire.
To find out more contact John Stienlet
Our national Marketplace Sustainability programme aims to ensure that businesses have a clear vision of how they can make a proportionate and profitable contribution to achieving a high quality and sustainable lifestyle for all.
To find out more contact Gudrun Cartwright