Corporate Respons­ibility

Günter Geyer Award for Social Conscience

Launched in 2012, the Günter Geyer Award for Social Conscience shines the spotlight on Group companies’ commitment to supporting social causes. Named after the Chairman of the Wiener Städtische Versicherungsverein Managing Board, the accolade is awarded annually to three Group companies which have provided outstanding service to the community through their social activities, or those of their employees.

As in previous years, the 2017 winners stood out for their exceptional dedication to society.

First place was awarded to GPIH (Georgia) for two main projects focuses the environment sector as well as the social area. International studies have shown that air pollution in Georgia is among the highest of any country in the world. Cars are the main contributors to poor air quality. In 2015 GPIH joined forces with two NGOs to set up a nationwide awareness campaign with the slogan of Don’t be an Egoist, be an ECOIST, designed to draw attention to the associated environmental and health care implications. Implemented in April/May 2016, the campaign raised awareness of a pressing issue, and also went some way towards providing a partial solution through a special car insurance product linked to an eco-discount and tree planting promotion. Another GPIH Initiative is based on an employee analysis: After analysing which of its sales employees were the most successful, GPIH came to the conclusion that it should be looking to hire the kind of people who do not necessarily fit the traditional requirements. Instead, the company went for employees who were over 35, had families and/or older children, did not have any special qualifications or experience, but were highly motivated. GPIH took a risk and organised a nationwide series of job fairs, at which they held interviews with prospective employees. The people who made the final cut participated in a six-month training course – during which they were also paid. The project was flanked by a media campaign.

Hungarian Group company Union Biztositó took second place. The company developed a new CSR programme as part of its merger with Erste Biztositó. Existing social activities were extended to include a focus on “educating and integrating young adults”. Sales employees were incorporated more closely into Social Active Day following the decision to introduce the idea of a “tender for Social Active Day”. This gave regional offices an opportunity to submit their ideas including projected implementation costs, and a special committee determined allocation of funds. Union sponsors selected products, specifically those designed to proactively improve the lives of the individuals affected, restore their independence and get them back on their own two feet as soon as possible.

BCR Life (Romania) won third place for its social conscience without any CSR budget! That is only possible with a great deal of creativity, motivation and the support of its employees. This is reflected in the large number of participants in Social Active Days, some employees are involved in more than one project. BCR Life is working hard to show its dedication to social causes, with education at the heart of its efforts. That is why the Group company contacted “Ateliere fara Frontiere”, which cleaned the PCs, deleted data and installed Windows software so that they could be used elsewhere. The PCs were put to good use in school computer labs (15 per school) and a social centre in Brasov, and made available to children from socially disadvantaged families. BCR Life hoped that the campaign, which played out under the banner of “Yes for education”, would go some way towards supporting educational initiatives.