Gas Network Ireland has been shortlisted for the Outstanding Community Support Award for exceptional customer service and support to communities as part of the 2021 CCA Excellence Awards after the semi-State organisation exceeded its Corporate Social Responsibility goals throughout 2020.
Gas Networks Ireland and its staff contributed over €250,000 to more than 30 charities in 2020. This was up 15% on 2019, as the gas network operator worked closely with a number of groups supporting the most vulnerable in the communities where it operates during the pandemic.
The Business Working Responsibly Mark holders focussed on education, poverty, homelessness and mental health organisations and charities, with employees accumulating a total of over 580 volunteering hours, despite the challenges of social distancing.
Among its most significant partnerships in 2020 was Gas Networks Ireland’s programme with Age Action. As well as funding support, the utility’s staff participated in an online tech-tutoring programme for older people, teaching simple technology skills such as making video calls to family members, a hugely important part of staying connected with one another throughout the pandemic.
‘Gas Networks Ireland exceeds 2020 CSR goals with fundraising, volunteering and a CCA Award nomination for their commitment to local communities.’
Another key area of support was education, particularly in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects. Gas Networks Ireland has partnered with Junior Achievement Ireland to run the STEM education programme, Energize, programme for the last decade. Energize was delivered to 5,000 sixth class students in 19 counties last year and was also made accessible online.
Other organisations and charities to benefit from Gas Networks Ireland’s support last year included the BT Young Scientist, Co-operation Ireland, Engineers Week, Time to Read Cork and Dublin, Skills at work Beneavin College Finglas and Nagle College Cork.
Commenting on the success of the initiatives, Christina van der Kamp, Corporate Social Responsibility Manager at Gas Networks Ireland, said: “Volunteering is a key part of our social engagement. Our staff contribute to a range of causes in their communities. Many reported that staying engaged in volunteering, even online, helped them to cope with the pressures of lockdown. We are also thrilled to have been shortlisted for the Outstanding Community Support Award in the 2021 CCA Excellence Awards. As a company, it is great to be recognised for the passion our staff have displayed throughout these challenging times. We look forward to continuing with our volunteering and donations this year and supporting communities and charities around Ireland.”
The 2021 CCA Excellence Awards will be held on March 19.
Photo Caption: John Dunlea and David Crancher from Age Action Ireland with the van Gas Networks Ireland donated to help with the charity’s ‘Care and Repair’ programme in Cork. The van will be the dedicated transport for volunteers carrying out small repair jobs in the homes of older people in Cork.