10-YEAR ANNIVERSARY AND 2022 EQUALITY AWARDS

Last Friday, we celebrated our 10th Anniversary by recognising the amazing individuals who make us who we are. After 10 years of helping our young people improve their professional skills and kickstart their careers, we held our Equality Awards ceremony in London.

We kicked off the night with some inspirational words from our keynote speaker, Julie Chakraverty, who is a leader in creating more inclusive workplaces. This also included a welcome from our CEO, James Adeleke, going through 10 years of GS history.

During the event, we recognised the amazing individuals who have contributed to our move to equality. Whether they are our employers, success seekers, mentors and partners, they have all set the standard of what should be expected from a modern-day workforce. We celebrated the dedication, engagement, contribution and dedication of the people we have met on our journey.

We are extremely grateful for all of the individuals who have helped us make this event happen. A Special congratulation is owed to our award winners, who are an integral part of our journey. See below for winners in each category:

EMPLOYERS

 

Equality Partner of The Year – Winner: Accolite Digital

This category awards partners for demonstrating a true commitment to the cause of moving society to equality.

Accolite Digital has demonstrated that they are deeply committed to spreading the #MoveToEquality cause. This company has actively participated and dedicated their time to a range of different community engagement/outreach opportunities such as workshops, webinars, virtual and in-person events.

 

In addition to recognizing this fantastic partnership, this award is also a recognition of the progress made in their graduate programme focused on improving gender and ethnic diversity within the company and the steps they have taken to address the inherent inequalities within the technology sector. Our partnered graduate programme with Accolite Digital runs in Glasgow, London and is expanding to Montreal in 2023.

Best Mentoring Programme – Winner: PA Consulting Group

 

This award honours partners’ commitment to using mentoring to address inequalities of people from underrepresented backgrounds entering the profession. It takes into account successful mentoring connections, innovation, engagement across the business, reach and impact.

Our mentoring programme with PA Consulting has grown year after year. From 35 staff mentoring in 2021 to 75 staff dedicating their time to mentoring sessions for our 2022 cohort. They have allowed our success seekers from disadvantaged backgrounds to make meaningful connections and gain useful advice from experienced professionals.

The PA Consulting mentorship programme had the largest reach and received the best praise from our beneficiaries. 75 Staff members had the opportunity to give back to society and cultivate the skills of our young people, such as communication and active listening skills. PA Consulting has used the mentoring programme to engage stakeholders across the business and externally to show how mentoring can be a force for good.

Best Graduate Programme – Winner: TD Securities

This award recognizes partners’ journeys and the commitment that they have shown to increasing diversity of their workforce through their graduate programme.

 

The award recognises the evolution of the TD Graduate programme, which evolved from the internship programme that we collaborated on back in 2019. The graduate programme operates in both Ireland and the UK. It recognises how the entire business has bought into the partnership as it aligns with their purpose of enriching the lives of the communities in which they operate. Embedded in the graduate programme is an ethos that no one is left behind. Whereby applicants are supported through the application process via webinars, access to speed mentoring sessions and other opportunities.

Best Internship Programme – Winner: AlixPartners UK

This award recognizes partners who contribute the most to the move to equality cause by using an internship programme as a tool to tackle inequalities within their sector.

 

The TRS division within AlixPartners has partnered with Generation Success to run an internship programme and contributed to creating a more diverse environment within their sector. The entire TRS team has been engaged with the programme, including attending social mobility training, taking part in interviews, and attending events. AlixPartners’ dedication to continuing to learn and evolve their processes makes them stand out as an equality partner.

Best Social Value Partnership – Winner: NextWave Consulting Ltd

This award category honours employers who have embedded social value/equality into their business model in order to ensure that as they grow their social impact grows as well.

 

Next wave has won this award because for each size-dependent contract they are awarded, they guarantee 2 weeks of paid work experience to a young person from Generation Success. Over the last 3 years, we had 15+ success seekers benefit from the paid work experience and this summer 1 of them was given a full-time graduate offer.

Best Community Engagement Programme – Winner: Paul Hastings LLP

This award recognises the partners who have empowered our community engagement and outreach activities towards our move to equality.

 

Paul Hastings LLP have partnered with Generation Success on a number of initiatives focused on engaging staff across the business to level the playing field in the professional sector. They have been forerunners in trying out new techniques and systems. Over the last year, they stood out by:

  • Being the first organisation to utilise our volunteering platform;

  • Hosting a careers day for 60 schoolchildren from underrepresented backgrounds;

  • Hosting events and inviting their staff to participate such as: A Law Discussion Panel and a Law speed mentoring session

  • A business hackathon – enabling young people to work with million-pound business owners

Alongside these community engagements, they have also taken part in a number of workshops and training sessions to upskill staff on mentoring and make them more aware of the factors that put underrepresented groups on the back foot at each stage of their career.

Best Impact – Winner: Barclays Bank PLC

This award recognises organisations that have had the best impact on our move to Equality.

 

Barclays Bank PLC has won this award for a programme run in association with Pilot Light, where senior leaders from Barclays Bank were seconded to Generation Success for over ten weeks. The staff put their analytical skills and expertise to exploring an issue in depth and recommending solutions. The result of their recommendations has been a direct reason for Generation Success tripling the size of our organisation over the last 16 months, creating more opportunities for young people and engaging more employers in the movement.

Inspirational initiative of the year – Winner: IQ-EQ

This award recognises organisations that have created innovative and/or inspirational initiatives to address inequalities.

 

IQ-EQ was awarded in this category due to the initiative they created as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on disadvantaged young people.

 

IQ-EQ has created an 8-week paid internship targeted at young people at university who were impacted by covid and could not find any work opportunities, as well as those who had not gone to university but had decided to do a professional qualification instead.

 

Their drive to increase access to the wealth management sector and provide opportunities to those who had been missed out was something that we found inspiring, making it one of the most exciting programmes to work on. The result of the programme was that six people were taken on internship and three were retained, with the other three utilising their experience in full-time roles elsewhere.

 

 

MENTOR AND EQUALITY CHAMPIONS

Mentor of the year – Winner: Momina Rehman

This award recognises individuals who had contributed to a great mentoring relationship showing high engagement and being recognised by their mentees.

 

Momina has won this award due to her commitment to delivering a meaningful relationship with her mentee. Besides her levels of engagement, Momina’s mentee shared with us a wonderful testimonial about her support and how she benefited professionally and personally from the sessions. We are thrilled to see how much your mentee has grown as a result of her guidance.

Equality Champion Of The Year – Winner: Jo Geraghty

This award recognises individuals who embrace our cause by spreading it over their companies and involving both internal and external stakeholders to be a part of the change.

 

Jo Geraghty has won this award because she has proactively taken on the mantle of being an equality champion. She has engaged in a variety of initiatives from joining our mentoring programme to encouraging her staff to become mentors. She has taken on one of our success seekers for one year, she has connected GS to her clients, and she has also engaged her staff to work on creating a leadership program for our success seekers.

 

Most of these initiatives were pushed by her because she truly believes in fostering change to create a world where a person’s career is not determined by their birth.

Most impactful speaker – Winner: Adina Ezekiel

This award recognises speakers who have had the most impact on attendees.

 

Adina Ezekiel has won this award due to her impact on the success seekers who have had the benefit of hearing her speak and taking part in her workshops.

 

The testimonials that we received from our attendees at the Paul Hastings LLP careers day about her workshop were truly breathtaking. The school and students all said that it had been the best careers day and industry event that they have ever been to. It really helped to enable the success seekers to see what was possible with a career in law. She has the ability to adapt her speaking staff for a more mature audience as well as the younger groups that we engage with. She is the perfect role model for our success seekers.

Most Engaged – Winner: Kattie Liggins

This category recognises mentors who have done more than their original scope – the ones who went the extra mile to help our move to equality

 

Katie has been mentoring 2 mentees at the same time and we have received great feedback from both of them, who have mentioned how impactful the sessions with her have been. We know 1 mentorship connection is time-consuming and requires a lot of commitment. But Katie has been equally engaged in both of her mentorship journeys with these young people.

Change Champion – Winner:  Margaret Ekpo

This award recognises the people who are catalysts for change for our mission within their organisation and in society.

 

Margaret Ekpo received this award because she has been a true driving force behind the partnership between Generation Success and PA Consulting. She has cultivated a grassroots movement within the organisation there has engaged all stakeholders both internally and externally. So much so that their global CEO was able to join us from America for our last mentoring graduation ceremony. He also joined the last one virtually.

 

She has created an environment and a team of people within the employee resource group that has had a massive impact on the organisation and in some ways has accelerated their work to impact society for the better.

 

We started with an initial mentoring group of 35 which has now grown to 75 this year and we look forward to the impact we can make together in 2023, with help from more inspiring individuals like Margaret.

Best Sector Partnership – Winner: Race For Natures Recovery

This award recognises the best charity partnership working to move society to equality.

 

This award was given to the Racial Nature initiative in a collaboration between Generation Success, Action Conservation, SOS UK and Voyage. The initiative was brought together as a response to Covid’s impact on youth prospects across the United Kingdom. The consortium was able to create a government Gateway and recruit 35 employers across the charitable sustainability sector to create 135 jobs aimed at increasing the diversity of the sector. As the sector only has 1% of employees from non-white backgrounds the programme had the following criteria:

 

  • Every employer had to commit to paying a living wage;

  • Every employer had to commit to taking part in diversity and inclusion workshops run by Generation Success;

  • Every employee had to commit to taking part in knowledge-sharing workshops;

  • Every employer had to commit to taking part in our research to better understand the barriers affecting increased diversity within the sector.

 

The work engaging stakeholders and DWP created a lot of learnings. The gateway was one of the best-rated gateways in the country. It also saw employers pause or restart their recruitment if they did not get a diverse shortlist from the DWP process. Many employers stated that they had changed their recruitment and retention policies based on their learning from the programme.

Success Story – Winner: Daniel Joseph

The success story award is for a person who exhibits everything we want our success seekers to emulate in life. That idea that success is a balance of life which includes career, supporting others to succeed and pro-actively supporting the movement.

 

Daniel Joseph originally signed up for Generation Success’ mentoring programme years ago when our beneficiaries would pay a nominal fee to receive mentoring and we would use the proceeds to subsidise our initiatives and mentoring for our success seekers. Through mentoring, Daniel was able to get two promotions in 6 months. His mentor’s encouragement for him to apply for these promotions and the support he received during the process are key factors in his success, according to Daniel.

 

Throughout his journey, Daniel has always found time to support the work of Generation Success and give back to others. He has mentored, spoken and even trained the team at Generation Success.  He has taken it upon himself to connect members to opportunities and has been a fantastic champion of the work that we do.

Lisa Hau Award – Dedicated to change Winner: MEI HUANG

Lisa Hau was one of our mentors. She had volunteered, spoken and given testimonials for GS, among other initiatives. She has dedicated her life to serving others and making change happen. Unfortunately, she tragically committed suicide.  The “Lisa Hau Award – Dedicated to change” is in honour of her spirit, passion and commitment to creating a world where your career is not determined by your birth.

Mei Huang won this award as she has been a dedicated volunteer for the last 6 years, supporting Generation Success and our mission to equality. She started her journey as a member, then became a student ambassador and then started to volunteer at our events. When she qualified as an accountant, she continued to support Generation Success, volunteering to help us with bookkeeping and financial advice as well as engaging with our mentoring programme and events. She continues to dedicate her time on a monthly basis to support our work, even during covid when her previous company put people on furlough and she had to pick up their workload, she still showed up and volunteered.

We also owe a special thanks to the amazing teams at NatWest and our own Generation Success representatives, who have helped us organise this event:

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