Walsall Works Community Support Awards recognising social value were first presented in 2017. All winners have to meet a quality standard and this year there is special recognition for additional activities carried out during the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic.
This year, four businesses have been awarded Gold Partner status and seven have been named Silver Partners. All the recipients have demonstrated targeted local recruitment as well as significant social value activities in areas such as helping staff to increase their skills, raising aspiration in schools and supporting community activities.
Serco have progressed to become a Silver Partner from their Bronze award last year, thanks to their promotion and delivery of the Skills Support for the Workforce contract to upskill local companies and their efforts in supporting residents recently made redundant through thier Skills Support for Redundancy provision.
Each Partner has not just delivered an exceptional amount of work in the community over the last year but have also been some of the leading organisations responding to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic. Examples of this include Midcounties Co-operative providing a home delivery service, putting £25k into a food bank fund and a key worker fund as well as Serco staff supporting Walsall Council’s Kindness Box drive, gathering donations of craft items, books, food treats and pampering products to be gifted to those in the community having to shield during lockdown.
“We are very proud to have been presented the Silver Award, building on our Bronze Award from last year. Laura Johnson, Skills Support for the Workforce, Partnership Coordinator
The awards will be formally presented in October.
Deputy Leader of Walsall Council, Cllr Adrian Andrew said:
“I’ve seen some great examples of employers going the extra mile to put something back into their community and these awards are one way of not just celebrating their efforts but recognising them too. This is exactly the kind of work that Walsall Council would like to encourage and I would personally like to thank all the winners for the positive work they have done in Walsall.”
Walsall Council created the Walsall Works programme in 2012 and to date it has supported over 3,000 Walsall residents into jobs, apprenticeship and training. The usual delivery of job clubs, 1-to-1 appointments and the Black Country’s largest jobs and skills expo has been adapted in light of the Covid-19 pandemic with virtual and socially-distances appointments now being offered.