Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is an acknowledged aspect of business success. Subsets of CSR, including corporate social investment (CSI), and employee volunteering provide staff with opportunities to participate directly in the community engagement strategies of business.
In South Africa, well structured and resourced employee volunteering programmes (EVPs) are reaping multiple benefits for their businesses, their employees and the communities they support. A pertinent concern is that there are still many corporates who often do not have a dedicated EVP office or resource, leading to a lack of capacity and availability of time to organise effective volunteering initiatives.
Nonprofit organisations also report the lack of corporate understanding of their social needs. At the global level enlightened business leaders are aligning all these activities with core purpose in order to ensure more sustainable business and social change outcomes.
Sizwe Nxasana, CEO of FirstRand says, “Whilst CSI is now an acknowledged element on the South African corporate agenda, the shared value potential of employee volunteering will only be realised when programmes are managed, supported and integrated into the corporate agenda.”
Given the business and social development potential of employee volunteering, FirstRand, with the support of CAF Southern Africa, is hosting the second Beyond Painting Classrooms (BPC) employee volunteering conference on 22 and 23 September 2015. The conference will take place at the Wanderers Club in Johannesburg. The Beyond Painting Classrooms (BPC) initiative began in 2012 and seeks to promote a developmental approach to corporate employee volunteering that yields benefit for both business and society. This 2015 conference is themed ‘Building Relationships for Socio-economic Change’. Over 40 speakers will participate in the two day conference, including a number of high-profile leaders from local business and the NGO sector who will share their experiences on the value of investment in building cooperative relationships and mutually beneficial cross-sectoral partnerships.
Among these, Bobby Godsell, chairman of Business Leadership South Africa will discuss the role of business in developing the active citizenship of employees and Professor Jonathan Jansen, University of the Free State Vice Chancellor will talk about the potential of volunteering in business and personal transformation. International thought leaders from Points of Light, the foremost volunteering advancement institution in the United States, will share their experience on best-practice approaches including the particular value of skills-based volunteering. Participants will also hear young South Africans – our future South African leaders – about how they have embedded volunteering into their approach to business and social engagement.
The conference will also offer participants the opportunity to participate in practical workshops on a number of relationship-based aspects of employee volunteering, including volunteer mobilisation and programme design, NGO readiness for employee volunteering and volunteer management, mentoring, and personal and professional transformation.
Conference participation will have value for a broad range of stakeholders including corporate social investment managers, HR/Marketing and PR/Learning and Development/Transformation managers/Corporate Affairs/Sustainability managers, employee volunteering managers and champions, corporate volunteers, NGO managers and volunteer coordinators as well as representatives from government/inter-governmental organisations, volunteer promoting organisations and education institutions.
Seats are limited to 180 participants. Register today and be a part of this important conversation.
For more information on the Beyond Painting Classrooms initiative log onto: http://www.firstrand.co.za/csi/volunteers/Pages/beyond-painting-classrooms.aspx and to book your place at the conference please send an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org and the conference organisers will contact you as soon as possible to confirm your registration.
For more information contact:
The FirstRand Volunteers Programme
Tel: 011 282 1773
Business Development Manager, CAF Southern Africa
Telephone: 011 334 0404
For more about FirstRand refer to www.firstrand.co.za.
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