Voted by The Judging Panel
Sponsored by Hill House Hammond


AXA Insurance

In the UK, AXA Insurance has grown by acquisition over recent years at a rapid pace resulting in three very distinct cultures being brought together.

In April 2003, a grass-roots initiative was created that involved participation of all its sites. Its aim was to raise the profile of AXA in the community, to bring together people in the business and to make employees feel more involved and valued in the community in which they work.

A competition was devised encompassing sport, art and the environment at a local level, by creating a competition for local schoolchildren aged eight to 11. The project set out to encourage creativity and team spirit, while highlighting the importance of community spirit, both internally and externally, reflecting AXA's core values.

Fifteen AXA office locations across the county took part - with either one or two AXA employees acting as 'communications champions', co-ordinating and facilitating the competition within their region.

This not only involved getting the schools on board, but also ensured involvement from their colleagues, and other members of the local community.

Local schools were invited to create a sculpture that represented the local community, made out of recycled school equipment. To encourage them to take part, all 56 participating schools were given a free AXA branded football or netball kit in their school colours.

A regional finalist for each of the 15 AXA areas competing was chosen by a panel of judges - comprising a local AXA representative and members of the local community. These were then put to an online national vote at the AXA website - a staggering 141,000 votes were logged by the general public.

Highly commended

Adam & Gaskell

As a company, our attitude to sponsorship has always been to help clubs, organisations and charities raise money rather than simply sign a cheque in their favour.

When we heard that one of the oldest agricultural shows in the North West was in danger of folding due to the lack of funds we set about raising funds and promoting the event which had first been held almost 200 years ago.

Quite apart from generating much-needed cash we felt that with the local press on our side and luck with the weather we may well help to swell the gate.

With help from insurers, clients and friends we were able to hand over a cheque for £3,200 to the show's organisers. On a beautiful day in early August a record number passed through turnstiles. The show goes on.