Following the Indian Ocean tsunami at the end of 2004, the 3SI Group sought ways to offer relief to the victims. Managers and staff were not satisfied by making a simple donation: in 2005, they created the association "Tharangambadi", named after an Indian village.
Voluntary leave with GROUPE 3SI
7. Community involvement
Skills and technology transfer
Through the efforts of this association, the Group showed its interest in helping a country adversely affected by the tsunami, where it was already doing business and where it could reach out to children as a priority.
25 individuals from 17 Group companies introduced this "Tharangambadi" project, focused in 3 directions: sponsorship of child victims, creation of a voluntary leave system for relief aid, and deployment of voluntary employees on a relief mission in India.
One Group staff member was assigned to initialize and coordinate the entire set of actions.
With significant financial backing (over €100,000/year promised by the company, donors or fundraising collections), established partners both in Europe and onsite (including the French Center for the Protection of Children's Rights in the sponsorship component) and a solid logistical organization, the actions conducted achieved their intended objectives:
- Successive missions to rehabilitate and build schools and activity centers at the devastated sites;
- Microloans granted to Indian women, allowing them to diversify income sources for their households: beef and goat farming, seamstress work.
The mobilization and involvement of Group staff, who accommodated the differences in Indian culture and customs, were the keys to this success.
The project at a glance:
- 150 sponsors,
- 15 missions successfully completed in India, Madagascar and Nepal,
- 170 employees from all Group subsidiaries and all countries were sent on missions,
- 12 schools and 6 cultural activity centers were remodeled, 4 orphanages built, 10 women's groups up and running thanks to microloan activity.
This Best Practice, initiated in 2005, was nominated in 2007 by Réseau Alliances for the Citizen Action Prize; this nomination was subsequently updated in 2012 as its action evolved.
CONTRIBUTION TO COMPANY PERFORMANCE
- A more humane face placed on the 3SI Group.
- Development of camaraderie within the Group, a feeling and pride of belonging.
- An intense human experience with strong emotions played out among employees and volunteers.
- Improvement in living conditions for victimized families (12 schools rehabilitated, 6 training centers built, 150 children sponsored).
- Economic turnaround of regions concerned.