This time of year is synonymous with giving – where we look to bring joy into the hearts of those who are near and dear to us.
This spirit brings out the best in all of us, not just individuals, but companies as well. Many businesses will make a special effort to give something back to the community with staff members getting fully engaged.
Now, you will no doubt recall my recent missive on ‘Should Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) be Profitable?’ (Click here to read)
Well there is another very important aspect to CSR. It should also be sustainable.
What do I mean by sustainable? Basically, your investment (time, money or product) should enable the recipients to improve and maintain a better lifestyle for themselves.
Unsustainable efforts only produce a short-term relief. They do very little or nothing, in resolving the problem on a more permanent basis.
If you had a problem in your business, you would not keep throwing money at temporary measures. Instead you would invest the correct amount of resource to firmly resolve the issue. The same ethos holds true for CSR.
As an example, this year OPS are supporting Advantage Africa, who are a local charity with international impact.
Established in 2002, Advantage Africa’s ‘inspirational people’ are committed to working with, and creating new opportunities for, men, women and children who are ‘doubly disadvantaged’ by disability or HIV/AIDS, as well as poverty.
Since its inception, the team at Advantage Africa have raised more than £1.16m ($1.92m), all of which has been channeled into sustainable actions. Very impressive, for a small local charity.
Working with their African partners, they have made a direct impact into over 10,000 people’s lives, by improving income, health and education, through providing encouragement, resources, links and skills training.
Over the years, they have worked to deliver sustainable benefits for local communities. Some examples of which are:
- In Mitaboni, they worked to establish a special school for children with learning difficulties – in fact they have built 6 schools.
- In Kallulini they supported the Rescue Team, a group of dynamic young people working to address the sickness, death and poverty caused by HIV and AIDS. The Team educate children and adults about the virus in schools, churches and marketplaces using entertaining and interactive drama, poetry, music and sport.
- This year they began a two year project to provide appliances and rehabilitation services to disabled people in Kenya.
There are many more activities they have been involved in…too many for this missive. To discover more about who they are and what they do, please visit their website at www.advantageafrica.org.
The key to the work that Advantage Africa do, is sustainability. They target their attention on people with multiple disadvantages and develop solutions, which generate a practical difference, where it matters.
They interface directly with the people and communities who they are looking to help and by-pass any middlemen confluence. This enables them to generate better value, long-term, sustainable results for the money they raise.
What better gift can you give someone who is not in a position to help themselves, than a sustainable solution to enable them to obtain and maintain a better lifestyle; making a real difference in their lives and bringing hope, where none was before?
To see first hand some of the wonderful results delivered by Advantage Africa and their partners, then click on the below picture to view one of their most recent videos.
If you feel inspired to support their cause, then click on this link http://www.advantageafrica.org/Disability%20appeal%20web%20version.pdf, to download their Christmas Appeal document.
To quote an old Chinese proverb: “If you want happiness for an hour, take a nap. If you want happiness for a day, go fishing. If you want happiness
for a year, inherit a fortune. If you want happiness for a lifetime, help somebody.”
This will be the final missive for 2012. However, we will be back in early 2013, with more tips, advice and uplifting stories to enable and empower you to exceed your expectations.
Have you got any issues? Would you like some advice or support? Then give us a call.
Engaging with OPS is completely RISK FREE. We put our money where our mouth is, by providing you with a Money Back Guarantee.
So give us a call on + 44 (0) 3332 020888, and see how you can gain, after all, you’ve nothing to lose.
If you like this transcript, be sure to ‘Like’ it on Twitter or Facebook or other social media, which you can do by clicking on the buttons below.