British super brand gains support from CSR champions

This week is an exciting one for Wetherby-based Pitman Training Group, as they welcome on board a Member of the House of Lords, Baroness Jill Pitkeathley OBE and Richard Flint Chief Executive, Yorkshire Water and Kelda Group, as together they set out to uncover and reward volunteers from across Yorkshire and beyond, with an award created to showcase and provide recognition for those who actively invest their time in others and dedicate themselves to making a difference in their local communities. 

Baroness Jill Pitkeathley OBE & Richard Flint, will be on the judging panel for the 2019 SuperAchivers Awards, supporting the introduction of the new Volunteer Award, open for individual nominations for those people in your local community who go above and beyond for others. As well as recognising individuals who are supporting local groups or grassroots sports, Pitman Training is also encouraging businesses and organisations who support volunteering maybe as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) to shout up too to gain recognition. Coming together with Pitman Training Group M.D Claire Lister, and a number of other influential judges from their fields, this collaboration is part of Pitman Training Group’s CSR commitment to give back to people who are actively improving the lives of others, in the communities within which they work.

Baroness Jill Pitkeathley OBE is a member of the House of Lords – she was the chief executive of Carers National Association (now renamed Carers UK) for which she was awarded an OBE in the 1993 Birthday Honours. She was a founding member of acevo, the Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations and she is currently the president of NCVO which champions the voluntary sector and volunteering because they’re essential for a better society. She said: “I am delighted to have been asked to join the judging panel for the awards and even more delighted to see the introduction of and support for the new volunteer award category. Each day, millions of people make a difference through voluntary organisations and volunteering and this is a great opportunity for them to be celebrated and recognised. I believe that as a society, we can all make a difference to the causes in which we believe.”

Pitman Training is also encouraging businesses and organisations who support volunteering to shout up too to gain recognition. Someone very active in this area of CSR work in the corporate world is Richard Flint who has also come on board as a judge. Richard is also Chairman of the Business in the Community (BITC) Advisory Board for Yorkshire and the Humber and a trustee of the charity Marie Curie. Richard says; “I am delighted to be a judge, the introduction of the new volunteer award is a great opportunity to showcase organisations who commit to providing time and opportunities for their teams to engage in volunteering, within work hours. At Yorkshire Water and Kelda we have a history of integrating volunteering into our business culture and offer a range of opportunities to support education, our local environment and our capacity building work with WaterAid Ethiopia.” 

Claire Lister, Managing Director at Pitman Training Group said: We’re so excited about this new addition to SuperAchievers, as part of this award we want to shine a light on the volunteers who are giving something back to the community and making a difference to the people around them, whether they do this in their own time, or have been given the opportunity through their workplace. As part of this activity we are also passionate about helping find more volunteers and so will be highlighting volunteering opportunities available across the country encouraging our 100+ Pitman Training centres to have volunteer opportunity boards made available. I see volunteering as vitally important in our society and have been involved with several local initiatives over the year – it provides opportunity for those of us who are better off to give something back, to develop new skills and experience new environments as well as providing a real sense of achievement and pride but the impact really comes in improving the lives of those you are helping -the power of which cannot be underestimated.” 

A Pitman Training Group team member who is currently actively involved with volunteering in Yorkshire is Products Manager, Gail Charlton. Gail said: “I was thrilled to learn that volunteering was to be an integral part of this year’s SuperAchievers campaign as it is something that has been close to my heart for many years.  I help out with animal welfare in a number of guises: visiting potential homes prior to a rescue animal’s adoption, raising awareness of smaller charities and undertaking hands-on shelter duties are just some of the responsibilities I’ve been involved with.  I also adopt my own rescue cats.  As well as helping animals and their respective charities, this work is also a fantastic complement to my day job; both are so different and therefore enhance each other.  I can’t recommend volunteering highly enough as a way of helping the community and also for the reward of knowing you have made a difference.”

Additional to the Volunteer Award the other SuperAchievers Award categories include; PA of the Year, Entrepreneur of the Year, Working Mum/Dad of the Year, Inspirational Achiever of the Year and Pitman Training Student of the Year.  Nominations can be made from now until 15thFebruary, 2019. The application process is quick and easy and can be completed online at http://superachievers.pitman-training.com/ Once entries have been submitted a shortlist is created, the public then has the opportunity to vote, alongside the judging panel on who they feel should be the winners.

Winners are determined by a combined judges vote and the public vote.  Alongside Baroness Jill Pitkeathley OBE and Richard Flint, this year’s judging panel also includes;

· Abigail Horne co-Founder of The Female Success Network and Founder of Authors&Co

· Nigel Higgins – DIY Daddy is a top 10 UK Dad Blogger who writes about the ups and downs of having five children on his award winning blog. Nigel won the Pitman Training 2018 SuperAchievers ‘Working Dad of the Year’ category.  

· Jade Burke is currently positioned as the Editor of the industry title PA Life, she has worked alongside some of the leading professionals in the industry, generating exclusive and engaging content for the readers of PA Life online and in print.

Winners of the SuperAchievers Awards will not only gain international recognition of being a SuperAchievers Award Winner, they will also receive an engraved award and a cheque for £500 and a voucher for a distance learning course of their choice.