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Begin Together Awards 2020 - Application form
The search for Ireland's Most Enterprising Town
Entry Details
Bank of Ireland will only use these details to contact the named individuals in connection with the Begin Together Programme. For more information on how Bank of Ireland processes personal data, see www.bankofireland.com/privacy

AWARD CATEGORIES
Only entrants from 1(a) or 1(b) below are eligible to be considered for the overall winner and the title of “Ireland’s Most Enterprising Town”.
0-2000
2001-4000
4001-7000
7001-14000
14000+
1 (b) City Award
City Village/ urban area entries for this award are welcomed from the following 10 cities of Ireland:
  • Dublin
  • Belfast
  • Cork
  • Derry
  • Limerick
  • Galway
  • Newry
  • Lisburn
  • Waterford
  • Armagh

City entries can be either an urban village or a specific urban area within the 10 locations above. The overall city winner will be automatically included with the 5 population category winners, as one of the 6 entrants for consideration to be the overall enterprise town winner.


About your entry

The Covid-19 pandemic has emerged as the biggest challenge to Ireland’s financial, physical and mental wellbeing in living memory. In this hugely challenging year, the Bank of Ireland Begin Together Awards will recognise those businesses and communities who came together to support local recovery and rebuilding in response to Covid-19.

For 2020, the awards timeline and judging process has been amended due to the Covid-19 pandemic and government guidelines, therefore it is important that your submission reflects the full extent of the work underway in your locality.

In addition, to responding to the judging criteria, all town and city village/urban area category entrants should include the following information in your submission.
4. Please enter your response below to the judging criteria guidelines and any other relevant information
In line with this year’s revised judging process, please note that this application form and your response to the judging criteria guidelines, are AN ESSENTIAL part of your entry and will be used for shortlisting purposes.
Section 2: Rising Star

In the Begin Together Awards 2020 there will again be a Rising Star category with a prize of €20,000 awarded to the winner. This category will focus on towns which have overcome major challenges and can demonstrate how they have achieved this. Entries must be specifically nominated in this category on the application form. Details required to enter for this award are outlined below. Entries will not be accepted from City villages or urban areas for the Rising Star Award.

1,000 words (maximum) – Your application must include the following;
  • Details of the town, with key demographics
  • Reason why town should be considered as Ireland’s Rising Star
  • The current state of the town; please detail the business and community impact of and response to Covid-19. Also include details of the town at 1 January 2020 and describe the changes from the previous state and the progress the town has made.
  • Details of actions and approach taken to progress the town pre and post Covid-19
  • Details of successful partnerships within the town and with supporting organisations who contributed along the journey
  • Details of increased employment/developments/new business in the town and recognition for the town at 1 January 2020
  • Current and ongoing initiatives and their impact
  • How would winning help your town towards its vision? Please include details of how you intend to use the prize money and the impact it will have.
Section 3 - Special Initiatives

1. SPECIAL INITIATIVES (1000 WORDS MAXIMUM)

You can enter more than 1 of the special initiatives listed below;

A. Local Town Promotion Initiative
B. Local Community Enterprise Initiative
C. Local Business and Community Response Initiative

The above categories are designed to honour the incredible work by communities who refused to give up on their town as they strived to ensure, with highly creative initiatives and sustaining existing initiatives, that their vulnerable population would be cared for and that businesses and communities would be supported during and after Covid-19.

Your application must include the following judging information in your submission;
  • Full details of the initiatives and actions undertaken
  • Impact of Covid-19 on your town (Please include business and community impacts)
  • Responses to Covid-19
  • Background to establishment of initiatives
  • Impact on its target market
  • Impact on wider community
  • Local and other support for initiative
  • Supply details of how initiative is funded
  • Persons involved and organisations represented
  • Future plans to sustain initiative
  • Details of publicity, social or otherwise during Covid-19
  • Any other information applicant wishes to add.

Initiatives established specifically to assist the town during Covid-19 are welcome to enter these categories, in addition to pre-existing initiatives.
Please give details of a specific marketing/promotional initiative for a complete town, specified section of town, time of year promotion or unique town product that your town has initiated to sustain itself during the Covid-19 crisis and restart the local economy as restrictions are lifted.
Please provide details of a locally run community enterprise, organised and managed by the local community that sustained employment and repurposed itself during the Covid-19 pandemic and was ready to operate on ease of restrictions. Details of a local enterprise initiative established specifically to ease the impact of Covid-19 on your local community would also be welcome under this category.
This category looks at the complete town and how the town’s businesses and communities responded by working together to manage the impacts of Covid-19. The judges would like to hear a number of examples from both businesses and communities and are particularly interested in joint initiatives, which ensured that community life in the town continued to function and that vulnerable persons were supported.
Please note: all these categories will be shortlisted, it is important that you include all the required judging information in your submission.
By entering the Begin Together Awards, applicants consent to Bank of Ireland (and its affiliates) using any and all photographs, video, voice recordings, or other media for promotional purposes (compensation will not be made available for any such use). By entering, all entrants agree to release, waive, discharge, hold harmless, defend and indemnify Bank of Ireland and its agents, officers and employees from any and all claims which may arise out of involvement in the Begin Together Awards.
Bank of Ireland is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland.
* Denotes a required field
Thank You

Your application has been submitted, please check businessbanking.bankofireland.com/campaigns/begin-together-awards for further information on the awards.
Appendix 1

300 word (maximum) summary of town/city area to include key information and important features of the town.
  • Introduction to town/city area
  • Key demographics
  • Main features of town/city area
  • List specific examples of economic and social enterprise initiatives you wish to present and or show to the judges
  • List examples of initiatives that have happened in the town which aim to create a better understanding of the finances of the businesses and wider community. List examples of Financial Awareness Development in the town e.g. breakfast briefings, seminars, training, guest speakers, BREXIT, developing business plans etc.
Appendix 2


Judging criteria for Bank of Ireland’s National Enterprise Town Awards 2020

(Please read the judging criteria below which may assist your Town when preparing your presentation and itinerary for judging day):

1. The Enterprising Town
  • Extent and range of business activity/business groups
  • Local enterprise initiatives/ events/promotions/marketing
  • Innovation e.g. new technology/social media etc.
  • Social enterprises

2. Attractiveness of town
  • Well maintained public realm areas/active tidy towns
  • Welcome signage and general street signage
  • Attractiveness of business premises
  • Parking and accessibility for all

3. Partnership and reaching out
  • Working with local authority/agencies
  • Joint initiatives between businesses through chamber of commerce, local business group and community
  • Diaspora engagement and twinning
  • Active involvement in public participation processes e.g. town plans/parking plans/public realm proposals, tourism plans, public participation network

4. Town Leadership
  • Representative of business and community organisations
  • Current and future plans
  • Campaigns/managing crises
  • Awareness of USP of town/town vision

5. Overall community support in town
  • Support for local businesses by community
  • Support for key service businesses e.g. post office, credit union, bank, ESB sub- office, local co-op etc.
  • Voluntary, culture, sports, heritage, environment, community etc. organisations
  • Initiatives to help businesses and the wider community make better financial decisions for themselves

6. Inclusion and diversity
  • Gender diversity in entrepreneurship
  • Inclusivity of other cultures
  • Details of initiatives supporting inclusion and diversity
  • Reaching out to disadvantaged international communities

7. Other
  • Recognition awards/town/clubs/individual etc.
  • Local publications/media etc.
  • Unique initiatives
  • Evidence of sustainability

8. Overall Impression
  • This category reflects the judges overall impression of the town based on the full extent of the visit.

Comment: The town need not confine itself solely to the sub- headings of the judging criteria as they are indicative guidelines only for the towns and judges. The judges will require the town to demonstrate innovation, pro-activity, sustainability, partnership, social inclusion, leadership and a sense of energy. The judges will only take into consideration the evidence presented on the day of judging by the town. The judges’ decision will be final.
Appendix 3

Rising Star Award 2020

Please note that this year’s awards will again include the Rising Star Category which will have a top prize of €20,000. This category will focus on towns which have overcome major challenges and can demonstrate how they have achieved this. They should showcase their commitment to helping people and businesses in their town to make better financial decisions AS PART OF THE SUBMISSION. Entries must be specifically nominated in this application form. The town must also be an entry in the overall competition to participate in this award. Details of the award are outlined in the application form

Rising Star Award – 1,000 words (maximum) – application detail

The application must include the following:
  • Details of the town, with key demographics
  • Reason why town should now be considered as Ireland’s Rising Star
  • Previous state of town and current state
  • What key actions were undertaken-give specific initiatives
  • Current and ongoing initiatives and outline of their impact
  • Details of successful partnerships within the town and with supporting bodies, e.g. Local authority
  • Details of how success was measured
  • Details of increased employment/developments/new business in the town and recognition for the town
  • How the award would be spent to promote or improve the town.

Judging of the Rising star:

Towns making submissions to be the Rising Star winner 2020 will be shortlisted on the basis of their submission. Shortlisted towns will receive a separate one and a half hour visit by a panel of judges.
This webform is now closed.
Judging criteria for Bank of Ireland’s National Enterprise Town Awards 2020

(Please read the judging criteria below which may assist your Town when preparing your presentation and itinerary for judging day):

1. The Enterprising Town
  • Extent and range of business activity/business groups
  • Local enterprise initiatives/ events/promotions/marketing
  • Innovation e.g. new technology/social media etc.
  • Social enterprises

2. Attractiveness of town
  • Well maintained public realm areas/active tidy towns
  • Welcome signage and general street signage
  • Attractiveness of business premises
  • Parking and accessibility for all

3. Partnership and reaching out
  • Working with local authority/agencies/town teams
  • Joint initiatives between businesses through chamber of commerce, local business groups and community
  • Diaspora engagement and twinning
  • Active involvement in public participation processes e.g. town plans/parking plans/public realm proposals, regeneration proposals, tourism plans, public participation network
4. Town Leadership
  • Representative of business and community organisations
  • Current and future plans
  • Examples of change initiatives or managing crises
  • Awareness of what makes the town unique
5. Overall community support in town
  • Support for local businesses by community
  • Support for key service businesses e.g. post office, credit union, bank, local co-op etc.
  • Voluntary, culture, sports , heritage, environment, community etc. organisations
  • Initiatives to help businesses and the wider community make better financial decisions for themselves

6. Inclusion and diversity
  • Gender diversity in entrepreneurship
  • Inclusivity of other cultures
  • Details of initiatives supporting inclusion and diversity
  • Reaching out to disadvantaged international communities

7. Other
  • Recognition awards/town/clubs/individual etc.
  • Local publications/media etc.
  • Unique initiatives
  • Evidence of sustainability

8. Overall Impression
  • In this category the marks will reflect the judges overall impression of the town and will be based on the full extent of the visit.

Comment: The town need not confine itself solely to the sub-headings of the judging criteria as they are indicative guidelines only for the towns and judges. The judges will require the town to demonstrate innovation, pro-activity, sustainability, partnership, social inclusion, leadership and a sense of energy. The judges will only take into consideration the evidence presented by the town on the day of judging. The judges’ decision will be final.

Rising Star 2020
Towns making submissions to be the Rising Star winner 2020 will be shortlisted on the basis of their submission. Shortlisted towns will receive a separate one and a half hour visit by a panel of judges.