Hurleston Lock partnershipWe believe that employee volunteering is a very effective way of developing the skills, confidence and talents of our people, supporting local communities and building trust with residents.

Employees who want to get involved in volunteering activities are allowed three days to volunteer in the local community.

Last year, more than 1,000 employees delivered more than 15,000 hours of voluntary work within company time – the equivalent to a £300,000 investment by our business.

In 2013/14, activities included:

  • Delivering talks and workshops in primary and secondary schools on a diverse range of topics - from staying away from work sites to not flushing the wrong things down the loo!
  • Running customer road shows in supermarkets, shopping centres and county shows, to explain to customers what their bills pay for, and how they can save water and money.
  • Environmental projects such as tree planting and canal side improvements.

We regularly work with our partners to organise dedicated volunteering days for different teams in the business. These partners include:

RSPB: the RSPB is a long term partner with whom we are working on a project at Dovestone Reservoir in Saddleworth to improve the catchment land surrounding our reservoir.

BeachCare: a consortium featuring ourselves, Keep Britain Tidy and the Environment Agency, working along the Fylde coast to improve bathing water quality.

Canal & Rivers Trust: we are working with the Trust on a project to preserve Hurleston Lock – the gateway to the Llangollen canal, from which we extract water to supply customers in Crewe and Nantwich.

North West Air Ambulance: the air ambulance is our official charity partner, and our employees have volunteered through a range of activities including helping to count and bag collection money and working in their charity shops.

Our volunteering activities were an essential part of a wider programme of community investment in 2013/14, which totalled £2.8 million.

If you would like to send us a comment about this report, please email our Head of Sustainability, Chris Matthews