EVERY year Evora Construction leads the York Cares Big Community Challenge to transform a community site in three days, with the help of 200 employee-volunteers from local businesses.
In 2012, the Big Community Challenge transformed an unused playing field at Haxby Road Primary into a vibrant outdoor classroom for pupils at the school and community garden for local residents, now named Greenfields School and Community Garden.
In 2013, the challenge transformed Bell Farm Adventure Playground into a multi-purpose area. The playground, which is managed by a group of local mums, is in one of the most disadvantaged parts of the city and is central to the local community.
For the forthcoming 2014 Big Community Challenge, Evora Construction, which is entering Best Business & Community Link, is currently scoping a community centre and grounds again in one of the most disadvantaged parts of York with the idea of transforming an old play area into a garden for elderly residents some of whom have dementia.
In advance of the Big Community Challenge, Evora Construction visits potential community sites to assess their suitability and to scope the project. The company then leads on the project management, in partnership with community partners and City of York Council to identify tasks to be undertaken by teams of employee-volunteers from other companies, and ensures resources are available.
Evora Construction provides staffing during the challenge, from site management to leading various activities and supervising the work of the employee-volunteers from other companies. In addition to this, Evora Construction calls on its supply chains to donate materials for the challenges.
Richard Elam, director at Evora Construction, which employs a team of 15 from the Eco Business Centre in Clifton Moor, said: "Our involvement is about giving a bit back to the community for us as a business.
"We are a small business, so we don’t have the opportunity to give something every day or month, so we decided that we’d condense everything that we do into the one challenge on the three days once a year.
"These projects demonstrate how a small company like ours can make an effective and strategic investment in our local community by sharing our expertise."