For the ninth consecutive year the Bulgarian Donors Forum (BDF) has presented the awards for ‘Biggest Corporate Donor 2014′.
The competition features companies that are sustainable and transparent and have supported significant societal initiatives and causes. The prizes were awarded according to the amount of financial investment by companies in the period from 2013.
The jury of eight ranked companies according to the quality of their programs. The BDF members’ vote found the best partnerships in the field of charity.
The ceremony took place on November 13, 2014 and was hosted by Rosen Plevneliev, President of the Republic of Bulgaria. This year the competition involved 42 candidates in 7 categories.
In the category ‘Largest Volume of Financial Donations’, the first prize went to Dundee Precious Metals (2,882,618 lev) and second place went to the copper company Aurubis Bulgaria (931,776 lev).
The prize for ‘Largest Volume of Non-Financial Donations’ went to Danone (175, 019 lev in donated goods and food).
The prize for ‘Greatest Contribution of Voluntary Work by Employees’ went to Mtel, with UniCredit Bulbank coming second.
The category ‘Most Generous Donor’ (by volume of donations, calculated as a percentage of profit before tax) was won by Dundee Precious Metals who donated 2.28% of their pre-tax profit.
The Quality Awards were won by Postbank for their campaign ‘The Best Start for Every Child’ in partnership with UNICEF Bulgaria. The bank won in the category ‘Best Donation Program’. For the ‘Most Transparent Donation Programme’, the jury chose ‘Choose to Help’ by Raiffeisenbank.
The award for ‘Most Successful Partnership’ aims to promote partnerships between companies, NGOs, public institutions and the media in the implementation of charitable projects and activities in support of community causes and is awarded after a vote of the members of the forum. This year it went to Telenor Bulgaria and the Maria’s World Foundation for their partnership project for the construction of day care centre ‘worlds’ to support people with intellectual disabilities.
Along with awards for companies, the BDF also recognised individuals who have contributed to the development of charity in Bulgaria. This year’s winner was Professor. Minko Balkanski – professor of physics at the Marie and Pierre Curie University in Paris, one of the world’s most famous scientists in the field of physics. He lives in France. In Bulgaria he has developed extensive philanthropic work through his Minu Balkanski foundation. He is the creator of the National Education Institute, the Institute for Children and the Summer School for Fun Mathematics. He has restored the centre of his native village of Oryahovitsa and the cultural centre in Nova Zagora as well as investing in repairs to homes for the elderly in the region. He has organised arts workshops and violin master classes and supported young and talented Bulgarians in their training and implementation.
The BDF board’s special prize went to the “Save, donate to…” initiative, whose aim is to publicise campaigns about the treatment of children. For 8 years now the team has maintained the site and participated in children’s campaigns voluntarily and unpaid. Thoughout its existence to date, the initiative has implemented over 65 campaigns in support of 55 children.
This year, the BDF decided to put the focus of the ceremony on volunteering. This emphasis was provoked by the huge outpouring of volunteer energy that our country felt after the emergence of humanitarian crises, namely the refugee wave from Syria and the floods in different places during spring and summer 2014. Many employees of companies in Bulgaria volunteer even more time to support charitable initiatives. The ceremony showed different faces of people who, whether giving their free time, energy, creativity or effort to various important public causes, are united in the belief that giving to others is alone reason enough to do what they do.
Translator: Morgan James/volunteer