City firms bid to take home top prize in Dragon Awards

The Dragon Award: given to those in the City of London who have championed responsible business initiatives
The Dragon Award: given to those in the City of London who have championed responsible business initiatives

Businesses tackling London’s social problems are being called on to enter the Capital’s top responsible business gongs.

The City of London Corporation which runs the Lord Mayor’s Dragon Awards, wants to hear from firms of all sizes and sectors.

From firms championing diversity to companies running volunteering and social mobility schemes, the annual prizegiving celebrates businesses going the extra mile to make a difference to society.

And for the first time this year, the ceremony will have a gong solely celebrating digital skills initiatives.

Over the last 32 years, Dragon Awards applicants have reached over 11million people, mobilising 200,000 business volunteers and providing a quarter of a billion pounds in donations and pro-bono support.

Awards up for grabs include the Lord Mayor’s Award for Leadership in Digital Skills; the Heart of the City gong; and the Community Partners prize.

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Last year’s winners championed diversity and social mobility in the workplace

Lord Mayor Peter Estlin said: “These awards are a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the great work firms are doing to tackle social problems across the Capital, and the wider UK.

“I’m very excited that this year we have an award focused on digital skills. It is now more important than ever that we bring communities together to build, develop and nurture the pipeline of digitally-skilled and innovative talent.

“Digital transformation offers us an opportunity to improve community cohesion, widen social mobility and build the UK’s competitiveness through skills development. It is an opportunity that together we must seize.

“I am calling on businesses of all sectors and sizes to come forward and show us what they are doing to benefit society.”

The awards will be open for applications until 16 April. All applicants will be invited to Mansion House in September where the winners will receive a prestigious ‘Dragon’ in recognition of their work.

Tim Campbell, founder of the Bright Ideas Trust and compère of this year’s ceremony, said: “I’m extremely excited to host these special awards for the second year running.

“There is some truly amazing work being done by businesses to help local communities tackle society’s most pressing problems.

“The range of employment initiatives supporting diversity in the workplace, helping under-represented communities and reaching people from disadvantaged backgrounds is something I really commend.

“These are life changing programmes paving the way for successful careers based on merit and hard work.

“We need more programmes like this and we want to encourage other firms to take up similar initiatives and play their part in creating a society we are all proud to celebrate.”

Since it was founded in 1987, the Dragon Awards has attracted high-quality applications from a variety of organisations across London and the UK.

Previous winners reported winning new contracts, improved internal relationships, stronger reputations and increased PR as a result of taking part in the scheme.