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Northern Gas Networks (NGN) has been named as one of the world’s most caring companies, thanks to its work to support communities in the North of England.

The gas distributor for Yorkshire, Cumbria and the North East won two awards in the International Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Excellence Awards on July 22, 2019, as well as being named the scheme’s overall winner for 2019 – receiving a ‘champion of champions’ trophy.

The company received the awards at a ceremony at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts (RADA) in London. Other participating companies included Unilver, Aviva, Warner Bros and British Gas.

The company won a gold award for its Community Promises Fund, delivered in partnership with Leeds Community Foundation and more recently in partnership with Northern Powergrid. The scheme provides grants of between £1,000 and £10,000 to local projects related to energy efficiency, promotion of the Priority Services Register, encouraging STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Maths) and home safety. Recent grant recipients include community radio stations, homeless charities, food co-operatives and refugee support groups. It was this was the submission that was the overall winning entry, a Heart of Gold.

NGN also won a silver award for its Comfortable Living programme (in partnership with Northern Powergrid) which sees Groundworks Green doctor programme  provide free energy and money saving advice to vulnerable customers. The advice is delivered in customers’ homes, and includes an energy audit, advice on energy switching and benefits claims, fitting of insulation, and grants advice. The scheme has delivered more than £550,000 of savings for local families over the past two years.

Tom Bell, Northern Gas Networks’ Head of Social Strategy said: “We are thrilled and very honoured to win these global awards, and especially to be recognised as 2019’s most caring company,

“As the North of England’s gas distributor, we keep 2.7 million homes and businesses cooking on gas. We always try to go above and beyond the day job, however, by supporting struggling customers and empowering local communities

“We work with some fantastic partner organisations to deliver our social programme, and we’ll certainly be sharing in the celebrations with all of them.”

Michelle Cummings, Northern Powergrid’s Social Responsibility Manager, said: “Having our partnership programme with Northern Gas Networks and Green Doctors recognised for its work to support the most vulnerable customers within the communities we serve is superb recognition for everyone involved. Through this programme we’re also sharing information about our free Priority Services Register which offers extra help to customers who may need extra support in a power cut due to their personal or medical circumstances.”

Simon Kilshaw, Groundwork’s Green Doctor Manager, said: “The Green Doctor’s are delighted to be a part of Northern Powergrid’s and Northern Gas Networks’ partnership programme, which has contributed to winning this important International Corporate Social Responsibility Award. At a time when local councils are suffering cut-backs to essential services, the continued funding and proactive support of NPG and NGN is vital in ensuring we are able to provide a sustainable home energy service to the many vulnerable households across Yorkshire”

Richard Collins, the Co-Founder of CSR Accreditation said: “The CSR Excellence Awards are presented to companies that have a heart – caring companies that use their privileged position to help their colleagues, communities, customers, suppliers, the environment and the less fortunate. Caring companies can be a realistic force for good and change-for-the-better, and we recognise and reward those efforts with the CSR Excellence Awards every year.’

Northern Gas Networks (NGN) keep 2.7 million homes and businesses cooking on gas, through a vast underground pipe network.

As well as providing a safe and reliable service to customers in North East, Northern Cumbria and much of Yorkshire, the company works to develop green and sustainable energy solutions, fit for a zero-carbon future.