The Nottingham-headquartered company was awarded gold in the Corporate Social Responsibility category of the CIPR Midlands PRide Awards 2015, in recognition of the success of its Charity Project, supporting five eye health-related organisations.
The Vision Express team also took a silver title in Consumer Relations campaign for its Vision Van, which was debuted for National Eye Health Week 2014 and toured the UK offering the public free eye tests.
The PR industry wins follow an announcement from Retail Week that Vision Express is shortlisted in the Audit Partnership Corporate Social Responsibility Initiative of the Year in its 2016 flagship awards. Vision Express will face competition from household names including Sainsbury’s, New Look, IKEA and Marks and Spencer, with the winners announced in March 2016.
The Retail Week shortlisting and CIPR Pride gold accolade acknowledge the significant impact Vision Express has made working with charity partners the Childhood Eye Cancer Trust (CHECT), Macular Society, Alzheimer’s UK, Stroke Association and International Glaucoma Association. These collaborations have seen Vision Express optometrists specially trained in the conditions, with employees across the company helping in awareness-raising initiatives and fundraising.
Vision Express CEO Jonathan Lawson commented: “We’re proud to be making a difference with our Charity Project and are humbled to have won the CIPR gold in the CSR category and been shortlisted in the prestigious Retail Week awards too. Across our network of almost 400 stores in the UK and Ireland, our teams work hard not only to provide excellent customer service, but help support our charity partners, so it’s great to have their efforts commended in this way.”
The Retail Week Awards have been running for over two decades and aim to highlight how critical retail is to the UK whilst celebrating the finest innovations and achievements in the sector. With a record number of entries for this year’s awards, it will see 130 finalists compete across 14 categories.
Speaking of this year’s shortlist, Retail Week Editor-in-Chief, Chris Brook-Carter said: “This year we’ve been struck by not only the quality of the award entries, but the quantity of high calibre admissions – making it the hardest year ever to pick our finalists. This is testament to the standards of excellence demonstrated by British retailers and is the reason why British retail is such an asset to the UK economy, through both its contribution to GDP and as the largest private sector employer.
“As the UK retail industry continues to innovate, grow and respond to the challenges they face by the ever demanding consumer, the 2016 Retail Week Awards is set to celebrate, toast and acknowledge the very best in our industry.”
The shortlist will be judged by a panel of leading industry figures including: Alex Baldock, CEO, Shop Direct; Richard Pennycook, CEO, Co-operative Group and Chairman at The Hut Group; Peter Ruis, CEO at Jigsaw; and, Nigel Oddy, CEO of House of Fraser.
Find out how Vision Express fares by following the awards on Twitter at #RWA16
Photo caption: Vision Express Senior PR Manager, Jenny Wye, collects the gold award in the CSR category at the CIPR PRide ceremony