We’re committed to serving the communities in which our employees live and work, and bridge the gap between the most affluent and vulnerable people in those areas.
Our Social Impact Strategy sets out how we plan to do this, and continue to help improve the local communities we work in. From a strong and successful apprenticeship programme to our Net-Zero pledge, the strategy works toward our overarching mission: deliver high performing people, build a legacy of excellence.
What is social impact?
Social impact is the effect on people and/or communities that happens as a result of an action, activity, project, programme or policy.
Why do we need it?
According to the ONS, Copeland has the third largest median gross annual income in the UK, the only place outside of London in the Top 10. However some parts of Copeland are also in the top 3% of most deprived areas in the country. We want to bridge the gap between affluence and disadvantage in all the communities we work in.
What are we doing about it?
We support our employees, clients, voluntary community groups, charities and educational outreach providers to deliver both short and long-term positive outcomes for our communities.
Our social impact strategy:
Supporting the disadvantaged.
We know all too well about the gap between affluence and poverty in our communities. Copeland has the third largest median gross annual income in the country, but the distance from the disadvantaged has never been greater.
We strive to change this through numerous volunteering and monetary initiatives. We operate a Grant Fund through Cumbria Community Foundation, donating over £10,000 per year to local causes, and offer independent donations and sponsorships to local charities and grassroots sports clubs. Our Employee Volunteering Policy entitles our staff to three days paid volunteering time to assist initiatives, including educational outreach events.
Over 10% of our workforce are in Earn-and-Learn positions, from first-year apprentices to Masters students. We operate a strong apprentice programme with over 50 apprentices currently working on a development plan. We strongly believe in developing our workforce, proven by our Managing Director and several Board members all starting their career as apprentices. We also support access to graduate opportunities, funding several university programmes including APM Project Management
Strengthening local skills.
We offer educational outreach to local schools in partnership with local training providers Centre for Leadership Performance and Inspira, as well as regularly hosting students on work experience placements. The Shepley Group member West Cumberland Engineering also offer a Skills Academy in association with Bendalls, a four week training scheme designed to assist unemployed and underemployed people in to the workplace and give them invaluable skills, both on the job training as well as CV writing and communication skills.
Improve health and wellbeing.
Our employees are one of our biggest assets and are key to our success, and we know how important it is to have a happy and healthy workforce. All of our staff have access to a health and wellbeing portal, free medical check ups and direct access to over 35 trained Mental Health First Aiders within the Group. But it’s not only our staff, we support over 14 grassroots clubs across 4 sports, enabling young people gain access to sport and outdoor activities and reap the mental and health benefits.
We’re supporting Britain’s drive to Net Zero and promoting environmental responsibility as much as we can. 100% of our energy tariffs come from renewable sources, and we have 12 electric vehicle chargers across our offices. All of our company car options provide an electric or hybrid option, and we have taken delivery of our first electric fleet vehicle.