CEMEX builds value of CSR in communities through innovation
Underpinning the value of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is its ability to consistently contribute in making lives better and fulfill unmet needs in communities despite a shifting socio-economic and environmental landscape. Corporate foundations recognize that innovation is key to driving sustainable development for all; hence the League of Corporate Foundations’ (LCF) 17th CSR Conference and Expo carried the theme, “Innov8 for a Better World.”
Corporate foundations shared innovative best practices and new perspectives on CSR leadership and implementation that ensured that positive impact in communities are sustained as part of companies’ ongoing business priorities.
CEMEX Holdings Philippines’ CEO and President Ignacio Mijares, one of the speakers in the first plenary discussion titled, “Lead to Serve, Serve to Lead! Innovations on CSR Leadership, Development, and Synergy” discussed how CSR should be embedded in the overall business objectives of the company as results are not only obtained through a healthy business baseline, but also by how lives are improved.
"Social performance is our license to operate. The goal is for communities to be better when we exist around them and eventually be able to sustain their own growth. For this purpose, we have a proactive approach in social development and we innovate on efforts according to the needs of communities," explained Mijares.
As a building solutions leader, enhancing lives through social development is at the heart of the company’s “Build the Nation Together” mantra and umbrella CSR campaign that assesses and addresses the specific needs of communities, with focus on areas where its cement plants are located.
"We are dedicated to empowering communities and upgrade the lives of Filipinos through sustainable programs for the society and the environment. We apply what can be effective and would meet the needs of the local communities, the environment, and the educational system," he said.
Some of the innovative nation-building programs highlighted in the forum include CEMEX Philippines Foundation’s Kalusugan. Kaligtasan. Kahandaan. (KKK) program, the CEMEX Experto Ako! program, the Build Unity initiative for disaster management and response, and Tsek (Tamang Segregasyon para sa Kalikasan).
The KKK program includes seminars on health, nutrition, family planning and disaster preparedness for community representatives and residents. It also involves the distribution of free personal first-aid kits, pamphlets on food nutrition and tips on what to do during natural calamities such as earthquakes, and provision of medical equipment such as digital infant weighing scales, mobile blood pressure monitors, and fetal dopplers, to name a few.
To provide much-needed livelihood and skills-training to create a more empowered and productive citizenry, the CEMEX Experto Ako! program is a tailor-made initiative that the company holds in partnership with Technical Education and Skills Development
Authority (TESDA) and the Philippine Business for Social Progress (PBSP). CEMEX tapped its extensive network of clients to find promising masons that can also serve as trainers in their respective areas. The program addresses the demand for local masons who will help build new houses or repair damaged ones while providing livelihood to the trainees.
Build Unity is dedicated to carry out a holistic, strategic, and synergized rebuilding program for survivors of typhoons in partnership with local government units and non-profit organizations such as during the aftermath of Typhoon Yolanda which ravaged the Visayas region in 2013.
Tsek (Tamang Segregasyon para sa Kalikasan) is a waste segregation initiative that also promoted the collection and recycling of dry plastics. CEMEX’s environmental CSR projects also include the installation of artificial reefs, and adopt-a-specie efforts for the long-term conservation of endangered species such as whale sharks, tarsiers, Negros bleeding heart pigeons, and the Philippine eagle.
CEMEX Philippines Foundation is a member of the LCF that is focused on building value for beneficiaries and stakeholders through collaboration and innovation that ensure that social efforts are integrated in delivering inclusive growth for all people and further enhance capacities to serve more and bigger communities amidst a fast-paced business and socio-economic environment.
The LCF is a network of over 80 corporate foundations and corporations in the country, and remains at the forefront of promoting CSR best practices among its members and the larger business sector since 1991. The 17th CSR Conference was recently held at the New World Makati Hotel and the CSR Exhibit was held at the Glorietta 3 Activity Center.