The BMW Group honored three employees at BMW Welt for their exceptional social commitment with the BMW Group Awards for Social Commitment. This year, 168 applications from 14 countries were submitted for the award – more than ever before. The winners were selected by a jury of company representatives and each received prize money of 5,000 euros, which goes directly to their aid projects. Projects were honored for “commitment across borders”, “commitment to integration” and “commitment in one’s own country”. The Vera and Volker Doppelfeld Foundation also awarded a special prize for the special commitment of a young employee.
Ilka Horstmeier, HR director at BMW AG and patron of the award, was impressed by the commitment of the employees: “I am proud of our employees, who really make a difference with their personal commitment in their free time. For me, they are role models – in the company and beyond. We honor responsible action as part of the BMW Group’s self-image: We love what you do.”
Many of the more than 134,000 employees of the BMW Group worldwide volunteer in charitable social projects in their free time and assume responsibility. The BMW Group has been honoring these contributions to social interaction since 2011 with the “BMW Group Award for Social Commitment”. Projects in South Africa, Peru and Germany received awards this year – from sustainable teaching materials and the construction of karts for disabled children to the fight against child trafficking and the founding of a hospital. Here are the winners in detail:
Belen Vasquez-Torres (39), who has been with the BMW Group since 2015, is the module manager in development. In her free time, she founded a hospital project in Peru and now runs it. She received the award for “Commitment Across Borders” for her willingness to help in the medical care of children suffering from leukemia in Trujillo. The prize money is to be invested in paying a psychologist and a clinic clown for a year.
Kurt Lada (51) has been working as a foreman at the BMW Group plant in Regensburg since 1989 and volunteers as a youth trainer for the Motorsportclub Hemau eV in the project for inclusion in karting. He received the BMW Group Award for “Commitment to Integration”. Now a handicapped-accessible kart can be purchased, with which young people with walking disabilities can take part in karting side by side with non-handicapped young people.
Shaylen*, who has worked for the BMW Group in South Africa since 2013, received the BMW Group Award for “commitment in one’s own country”. He ensures that girls are protected from sexual assault and child trafficking in South Africa. Shaylen wants to get children off the streets and takes care of medical care, among other things. He risks his life for this. The prize money is to be invested in accommodation, food and medical care.
The special prize of the Vera and Volker Doppelfeld Foundation for young committed employees went to Karin Gresser (26), IT specialist at the BMW Group in Munich since 2018. She brought in the “WeltFAIRsteher” project, a Germany-wide educational project for sustainable development. To this end, the award winner has developed interactive tasks for students from the fifth grade and has been involved in the conception of educational projects, fundraising and organizational development. The Germany-wide project, in which almost 1000 children have taken part since 2016, will be expanded with the prize money.