As quoted by the American writer, naturalist and development critic, Henry David Thoreau, “Goodness is the only investment that never fails”. The citation is quite apt for business these days as more companies are taking their sustainability strategies seriously.
Globally, the business sector has evolved noticeably in terms of embedding corporate social responsibility (CSR) strategies into their business strategies and earning profits by investing in the growth of society and protection of the environment. True CSR is indeed a perfect process which stands upon the framework of triple bottom-line with three pillars: People, Planet and Profits. It not only involves the corporate sector’s contribution in societal development but also brings back profits to the businesses.
So, does CSR really matter? Now that more and more companies are launching their CSR initiatives with innovative techniques, we can expect more positive outcomes in the years to come. But as they say, when the wind blows, there are those who build walls and then there are some who build windmills. Coca-Cola Pakistan has had its sustainability initiatives in progress since several years, which were at some stage supported by unique promotional activities as well. This metaphoric process of building windmills has established the company’s identity as a responsible corporate citizen by creating shared value.
COCA-COLA PAKISTAN’S NATURE TRIP TO NATHIAGALI
This year, on World Environment Day, Coca-Cola Pakistan organized a nature trip to Ayubia National Park, Nathiagali. The activity was connected to the celebrations going on throughout this year celebrating the 100 years of Coca-Cola’s iconic Contour Bottle. One hundred people were invited to the Nature Trip; including social media activists, media representatives, environmentalists and nature lovers, students, young professionals and a large number of people from civil society.
The group was taken to Nathiagali for a first-hand experience of the Sub-watershed Management Project that Coca-Cola has been carrying out in Ayubia National Park area for the past 6 years, in association with WWF-Pakistan. This flagship intervention is a comprehensive project which has achieved substantial measurable results already. These include recharge of more than 388 million litres of water in the last 5 years, plantation of more than 60,000 trees of indigenous species, development of several hundred fruit orchards, providing livelihoods to local communities, installation of rainwater harvesting structures in more than 100 schools, collection for reuse of more than a million litres of rainwater through rooftop harvesting and protection and rejuvenation of the 26 natural springs in the project area.
The activity was promoted through social networking sites to attain entry submissions for the trip from Lahore and Islamabad and to create maximum word-of-mouth. The official hashtag of the activity was #CokeTripToNathiagali.
- 600+ entry submissions.
- Coverage in 43 editions of 27 newspapers and 23 blogs.
- Hashtag trended in Pakistan on June 4th and June 5th with more than 4 million impressions generated through online posts.
THE COCA-COLA BOOK BANK
During Karachi Literature Festival 2015, the attending public had the chance to buy new books as well as donate their old books to a Book Bank. The innovative book bank collection spots were set up around the festival venue in Coca-Cola’s old glass-fronted coolers, refurbished to serve as bookshelves to collect the donated books. Visitors were given complimentary drinks as a token of appreciation for the donation.
Why The Citizens Foundation?
In 2010, Coca-Cola Pakistan took an initiative to build a school in a flood ravaged area of Muzaffargarh, in collaboration with The Citizen Foundation (TCF). The school building was completed in a record time of 18 months. The school provides quality education to more than 190 children from low income families. Coca-Cola Pakistan is also bearing all operational expenses of the school for a period of three years. Its ongoing support to education also extends to the CARE Foundation and to government schools, under the Adopt-a-School program.
Why Karachi Literature Festival?
Coca-Cola Pakistan believes that the corporate sector has an integral role to play in the promotion of education considering the fact that Pakistan is still an underdeveloped country and 40% of our total population is under 18 years of age.
Therefore, keeping in view the current low rate of literacy prevalent in the country, Coca-Cola Pakistan has led from the front to promote education in the country. This goes across the board from adopting government schools and carrying out refurbishment of the infrastructure and facilities in these schools, to creating an endowment fund at the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) for meeting the entire education costs of talented students from less-privileged backgrounds,.
With KLF 2015, Coca-Cola’s support to the festival entered its third consecutive year. The company remained the sponsor of the KLF – Coca-Cola Prize for the best book in English language by a Pakistani author. The yearly sponsorship also included an honorarium for the judges and complimentary availability of the company’s drinks for tens of thousands of visitors to the KLF throughout its duration.
- The idea of the Book Bank was well received and more than 2000 books were collected in two days.
- The books collected during the festival were reviewed by The Citizens Foundation (TCF) and those suitable for children’s use were collected to be sent to their schools. Other books were sold off in and the proceeds, PKR 50,000, were also donated to The Citizens Foundation.
- Wide coverage on print and electronic media.
- Activity hashtags #CokeBankABook and #CokeKLF2015 generated 8 million plus impressions on social media.
SPREADING HAPPINESS AT LABARD
To celebrate the essence of Ramadan, Coca-Cola Pakistan organized an exclusive Iftar at LABARD (Lahore Businessmen Association for Rehabilitation of Disabled) to share the blessings of this holy month with the disadvantaged of our society. The event was attended by MNA, Mr. Pervez Malik, Coca-Cola employees, students of LABARD’s vocational center and staff as a part of the Ramadan campaign, which tied in well with the Company’s philosophy of spreading happiness.
To ensure positive integration of disabled persons in our society, Coca-Cola Pakistan partnered with Lahore Businessmen Association for Rehabilitation of Disabled (LABARD) to construct a state-of-the-art rehabilitation centre for the disabled. The grant provided by Coca-Cola Pakistan for this centre was USD 200,000.
The grant helped LABARD build their vocational education training centre with facilities for vocational and skills development training, residential facility for disabled, personal development and training, treatment and therapy, and community awareness and participation.
- Coverage in 25 editions of 12 newspapers.
- Coverage by 8 TV and Radio channels.