Philanthropy is becoming an increasingly important factor for businesses. We’ve seen a dramatic number of charity based brands pop up over the past decade such as Toms. Their business model is unique and it grabbed attention for all the right reasons. It’s no wonder even the giants have followed suit. Businesses of all sizes are getting involved in philanthropy, and there are tonnes of amazing benefits that come with this approach.
So let’s look at five companies from a range of sectors that are doing philanthropy really well!
You’re probably quite unaware of all the hard philanthropic work that Nike take out, but here’s a few examples! Committed to creating positive social change, Nike work with a number of global partners in tackling some of the main issues presented to the modern world. They are also heavily involved into communities and offer a wide variety of different scholarships and grants for youths. Nike are passionate about sharing their love of sport and encourage kids to get involved, offering workshops and sessions to encourage fitness.
Philanthropy is definitely not just restricted to the fashion industry! Water cooler supplier Cooleraid definitely lead the way in charitable work for SME’s. Founder John Searle created the Lifeline Fund back in 1998 after a trip to Malawi. Having witnessed first-hand the poverty and desperate need, the Lifeline was founded and has since gone on to raise more than five million pounds through sales of watercoolers and bottled water.
From building schools to providing vital healthcare, the Lifeline Fund has transformed and saved the lives of many, and is a truly admirable company. Since 1999 the fund has built an orphan village which is home to 115 children, as well as two schools, two clinics and nine day care centres. The fund also helps the elderly within these communities and really is a ‘lifeline’ for the most vulnerable.
As soon as Toms is mentioned we all know exactly what this brand stands for. Their ‘Give one get one’ model is strong, bold and to the point. It’s also simple and doesn’t confuse consumers. For every pair of shoes they purchase from Toms, they know that one pair will be donated to someone in need. It’s effective and it’s extremely memorable, creating a positive brand image and emotional connection with customers. It shows that this is a brand that isn’t just about profits, but that want to help make positive change in this world.
British retail giant Marks & Spencer have had an increased focus on charity work and sustainability over the past decade. Through the addition of their new Sparks card they offer customers the ability to select a charity, for which 1p is donated to every time the customer makes a transaction. Since 2011, M&S have also donated over £1.5 million to Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity to help with improvements in childhood nutrition.
Did you know that travel company Expedia are also of a philanthropic nature? Encouraging their staff to get involved in charity work, they offer various volunteer grant programmes and gift matching programme which offers to double employee’s charitable donations. Full time employees and part time employees are able to take advantage of this and the volunteer scheme offers employees a grant of up to $15 an hour.
Whilst these are all really strong examples of philanthropy, there are ways in which smaller businesses can get involved and play their part too. Fundraising events, team charity days and volunteering are all good starting points. The most important thing is just getting started, you never know what you may achieve!
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