This week, we’re recognizing four ways businesses have given back during COVID. Over the pandemic, it has been amazing to see so many businesses giving in any way they can. Whether it’s by raising money, donating goods, or simply showing their support. It shows that in a time of adversity, that’s when a community comes together. Here are a few of the ways businesses have been giving back to their communities from around the world.
1. Helping people protect their loved ones.
Several businesses have launched donation campaigns that will help family members stay safe from the pandemic. The Miriam Foundation started a campaign to raise funds for the Miriam Health Centre to buy personal protective equipment. In addition, personal protection kits, along with complimentary shipping, were donated by Vaisala. The CDC Foundation also launched a campaign to raise money for the CDC Foundation’s Emerging Pandemic Threats Preparedness fund. In addition, several businesses have been giving away products to help protect the public from the virus.
While this may seem minor nowadays, the thought of even handing out free masks to the public over a year ago may have been unthinkable, so it is worth recognising the changes that businesses have made to protect their customers over the pandemic.
2. Charitable giving
Giving back is a big part of the corporate social responsibility program for many companies, and in a crisis, it’s no different. CSR programs have been working overtime during the pandemic to increase the amount that businesses could give back to help their customers and other people in need.
As part of CSR programmes, many businesses also set up charitable foundations that support various causes that are close to their hearts. The largest companies in the world donate millions through these foundations, and the focus of a lot of these foundations has been on the pandemic response.
For example, the Indiabulls Foundation has established a convoy of vans in India to provide mobile healthcare to remote locations, while also distributing over 2.5 million COVID healthcare kits across the country. Meanwhile, Citigroup’s Citi Foundation recently surpassed $100 million in giving as part of their COVID relief efforts, much of which goes to support small businesses.
3. Payroll donations
Although most businesses have temporarily halted operations as they monitor the pandemic, these companies have made it a priority to keep their employees connected and informed throughout.
Companies like Lattice Engines, Genspace and Creative Co-op have continued to pay their employees even outside of government support. This is a huge morale booster for employees who would otherwise be concerned about paying basic expenses such as rent and food, especially in countries that do not have furlough schemes or lacked government support overall.
Even larger employees, including Microsoft, Amazon and Businesses, continued to pay their workers despite the fact that there was no work for them to do. Microsoft, for example, continued to pay hourly workers who support their campus.
The world of education is another that has been turned on its head by the coronavirus pandemic. Schools all over the world shut down and students and teachers alike have been forced to adapt to remote learning. Luckily, many businesses recognised this and have decided to do what they can to help.
Some businesses have helped to support the digital shift by offering free services. For example, Logitech has launched a program for k-12 teachers to receive free webcams and headsets as they transition to virtual teaching, while Audible is offering many of their titles for free for children and students.
Other examples include Internet Service Providers boosting their speeds for free to help connectivity for those studying remotely or video conferencing software companies providing the means for free and easy communication.
As you can see, businesses all over the world played a huge role in helping the world recover from the coronavirus pandemic, but the job isn’t finished yet. Hopefully, this article will give you and your business some creative ideas that you can use to find your own way of giving back.