Has corporate social responsibility changed in 2020?

A number of our partners immerse themselves in projects and causes close to their heart away from their businesses. Whether local or national, it’s always important to give back where possible. 

It got us thinking about what corporate social responsibility looks like 2020. And why is it more important than ever? 

The pandemic happened. 

Businesses, families and countless individuals have been hit hard by the pandemic. With businesses closing their doors and workers losing their jobs, it’s been tough. 

Charities and organisations have felt some of the hardest stings; losing enormous amounts of money from large fundraising events being postponed and other similar events being cancelled all together. It’s estimated charities lost around £4bn due to the London Marathon being called off. When you think of all the other large scale fundraising that’s been axed, that vital lost funding doesn’t bear thinking about. 

Large scale charities have been able to at least weather the monetary storm, even if the restrictions have meant they can’t carry out their usual work. However, smaller local charities have faced serious doubts about their viability. 

What can we do to help? 

It seems that industries all over the world have been doing what they can. From schemes providing discounts or free products to key workers to larger corporations stepping in to help their smaller counterparts get through the worst of their financial struggles. There are people out there trying their best to do good. 

But how can you help? You, the person reading this blog. Well, first of all everyone has been hit by the pandemic differently. You may not be in a position to financially help right now. And that’s okay. But could you volunteer time? Do you have a vehicle you could offer to transport food to people who need it in your local area? Are there sectors that could really benefit from your skills on a pro bono basis? There are plenty of ways to get involved.

Getting started with CSR.

If you’re not quite sure where to start when it comes to which organisations to back, start by thinking about what your values are as a business. You may be able to provide a platform for them to raise awareness of their work. You may be able to volunteer time or resources to help them with a project. There’s so many ways to get involved without necessary There’s room to get creative! 

This year, The Northern Affinity has nominated local Leeds homeless charity, Simon on the Streets as its charity partner. Throughout the pandemic, some of the hardest hit have been homeless communities throughout the UK. This has only been exacerbated by the increased number of redundancies. We felt it was our responsibility to support the local efforts and the Leeds community. 

For those attending our last partner meeting of the year, we’re asking (where possible) for a small donation to the charity as part of your registration. If you’d like to find out more about Simon on the Streets, you can visit their website. Michael also had a discussion with Natalie Moran about the work and support SOTS are currently providing to the homeless community in Leeds. You can find this on our Instagram or our YouTube channel

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