Our Approach to Community Engagement
We harness the expertise, interests and time of our people around the world to raise awareness and take action to help meet social and environmental needs. We do this by investing in the potential of people and helping communities in need.
Colleagues around the world volunteer their time and share their skills to help transform lives and contribute to the wellbeing of our communities through locally-organized activities and global campaigns. Volunteer hours are logged by colleagues via our self-serve app, One Touch, and we encourage colleagues to take advantage of our eight-hour volunteer leave policy. In 2019, we continued our successful “Make Life Better” volunteer recognition program whereby colleagues that log at least eight volunteer hours receive a US$25 Kiva credit to loan to an entrepreneur in any of the 80 countries where Kiva operates. This not only enables team leaders to highlight their community impact but also expands that impact worldwide to others needing support. Our Make Life Better program sends a strong message encouraging colleagues to make a difference, find their purpose and extend impact to others outside of our direct communities.
Since the program began, our colleagues have funded 483 entrepreneurs, 85% of whom are female, across 40 countries. Many of their enterprises are along our supply chain, including in Cambodia, Guatemala, Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam.
We engage colleagues to act as community engagement ambassadors to inspire others, share information, connect with community partners, organize activities, and track outcomes and results. In 2019, we continued to publish regular community engagement newsletters to highlight how our work relates to global issues and to share stories of how our colleagues create impact around the globe. We also maintained communications with our volunteers through One Family, our internal communications platform, website updates and social media channels.
We continue to use our internal and social media platforms to tell impactful community engagement stories and encourage best practice sharing. Our One Family community engagement blog is the most read blog on the platform with over 32,000 views, and our social media audience continues to grow throughout the year, and now has an audience of almost 1,500 followers.
Each year, we work with over 80 community organizations to maximize impact including cancer funds in various markets, Cambodian Children’s Fund, Captivating International, Christina Noble Children’s Foundation, Crossroads, Habitat for Humanity, Movember Foundation, Red Cross, Room to Read, The Women’s Foundation (TWF) and the Worldwide Fund for Nature (WWF).
Details of our some of our activities in 2019 are shared below under our four focus areas of Happiness, Environment, Health & Wellbeing and Community.
Activities to increase the emotional wellbeing and happiness of participants and beneficiaries include:
- Supporting fun environmental activities in our New York office paired with Bring Your Child to Work Day
- Hosting a Fun Activity Day with Tribal School Students in Bangladesh, building on a long-term relationship with the school
- Organising Christmas activities in the UK, Hong Kong, the Philippines and South Korea with local community partners to spread festive joy and support those most in need. Beneficiaries included underprivileged children, children in orphanages and those living with disabilities
To help protect, preserve and restore the local environment in our communities across the world, we focused our action on:
- Allocating over 5,100 hours on environmental activities, including collecting waste from coastlines and cityscapes, building firebreaks in national parks and holding workshops to raise awareness about environmental impact as part of our annual “Clean Up Our World” campaign. Since it began in 2012, the campaign has brought together over 18,500 colleagues, friends and family members in support of almost 300 environmentally-beneficial activities
- Continuing momentum from our 2018 RETHINK Challenge, an addition to our well-established Clean Up Our World campaign, we again partnered with local, non-profit organization EcoDrive, bringing to the fore the issue of single-use plastic and exploring what can be done by individuals and businesses to address this problem. This year, colleagues worldwide participated in a campaign to avoid using single-use plastic items in daily life.
Health & Wellbeing
Activities that lead to improved health and wellbeing, both physical and mental, included:
- Organizing a four-month Health & Wellbeing campaign in 2019 to bring different topics including fitness and nutrition, mental health, emotional wellbeing and health awareness to colleagues and to highlight the importance of each to their daily life. The campaign also featured a variety of interactive and educational activities, including a panel session on health and wellbeing, slow yoga lessons and professional health consultations, which enabled our colleagues to benefit from learning how to incorporate mindfulness into their lives and to relax and meditate in the workplace.
- Donating almost 200 pints of blood and raising awareness for humanitarian needs across our offices from Thailand to Turkey, potentially saving up to 600 lives. In Hong Kong, we have supported the Red Cross for 21 years and received the Bronze Award of the Give Blood Alliance for our efforts.
- Our annual women’s and men’s health awareness campaigns, Pink Month and Movember, reached colleagues worldwide and resulted in awareness events and fundraising campaigns that were matched by the Li & Fung Foundation. For the sixth year running, Li & Fung was one of the top five Movember fundraisers in Hong Kong.
- In Hong Kong, our people led monthly gatherings with refugees and asylum seekers including a series of workshops designed to help participants deal with anxiety and stress, learn evidence-based positive thinking techniques, and address destructive behaviors and habits. Over 100 refugees and asylum seekers joined these sessions in 2019.
Determined based on calculations from www.bnl.gov that each pint of blood donated could potentially save as many as three lives.
To support the communities where we live and work, we undertook the following key activities:
- Supporting children’s education through donations of basic necessities, such as uniforms and classroom supplies, and by improving schools through hands-on construction, refurbishment and maintenance activities in Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Pakistan, Turkey and Vietnam.
- Donating clothing, meals and school supplies, along with volunteer time and financial support globally, to refugees, students, elderly, children in need, underprivileged women, orphans and the homeless.
- Sponsoring girls’ education and daily living essentials in a safe and nurturing environment and empowering girls with vocational training in China.
- Partnering with Cambodian Children’s Fund, Captivating International, Christina Noble Children’s Foundation, Foster Pride and other youth-focused organizations to empower, engage and uplift underprivileged yet high-potential young adults. We shared our skills, experience and expertise through career workshops, speaking engagements, mentorships and coaching, and provided financial support globally. In Cambodia and Vietnam, our support also included donating items such as food, books and school supplies.
- Fundraising to support those impacted by natural disasters in Bangladesh, Cambodia and Thailand.
- Working with our Logistics business to collect and deliver used clothes and donated samples to support Hong Kong community partners including Redress, the Rotary Club of Kowloon Golden Mile, Crossroads and the Christian Action Centre for Refugees.