The awards, hosted by the South Wales Chamber of Commerce, recognise achievements, best practice in business and contribution to the Welsh economy amongst individuals, teams and companies operating across the country. It is a celebration that highlights achievements, benchmarks companies against the competition, and rewards their teams.
The ‘Excellence in Community Relations’ category in particular celebrates teams that work with local schools and organisations, encourage volunteering and charitable giving and invest in community and third-sector projects.
Over the course of the year, the Welsh team has dedicated a wealth of its time to a number of important initiatives. Of particular note are the partnerships that have been built with two special schools in the region. First the team supported Ysgol Hen Felin, raising more than £21,000 to create a new sensory room and buy equipment, then holding volunteer days to paint fences, railings and handrails with all materials provided for free. The team has since begun partnering with Ysgol Ty Coch in Pontypridd — for whom it managed to win the £25,000 first prize in Gallagher’s 2018 ‘Making A Difference’ awards, which is already being invested in creating a state-of-the-art wheelchair-accessible outdoor play area for pupils and is set to launch this spring.
The team has also continues to take part in a number of volunteering initiatives including one-to-one sessions at local primary schools to boost pupils’ maths
skills and numeracy confidence; completing garden makeovers at a local nursing home and three schools; hosting workshops for the Princes Trust to help teenagers develop important life and social skills; and assisting a deep clean of the Sandville Self Help Centre in Bridgend.
Working to improve the environment is also high on the team’s agenda — with many hours of volunteering given to local litter picks, a ban on plastic coffee/water cups and a week-long recycling event to heighten awareness — including a visit to the waste-to-energy and recycling specialist Viridor to improve knowledge.
The Welsh team is led by Regional Managing Director, Mike Jones, who accepted the award at the Gala Dinner event held at City Hall in Cardiff on Thursday 21st February.
After collecting the award, Mike said: “Having the Chamber of Commerce recognise Gallagher for our efforts within our communities is the best accolade we could hope for, especially with the quality of all the finalists who are doing amazing work also. I am incredibly proud of our team. They work tirelessly engaging with the community through volunteering initiatives and on numerous fundraising events for worthwhile causes, giving up their personal time to support others. This award just motivates us further to keep helping others and trying to make a difference where we can. We are absolutely delighted.”
In Wales, Gallagher has four branches which employ over 150 people. Its largest branch, Llantrisant, is the Welsh Centre of Excellence, which is joined by Newport, St Mellons and Talbot Green.