The holiday season can provide an ideal opportunity for a business manager to ramp up an organization’s corporate social responsibility (csr) efforts. After a fairly long economic downturn, however, a business might not have a lot to invest in a holiday csr program. That does not mean a business cannot give back to the community; because there are a number of ways a business can give back without breaking the bank.
How to Generate a CSR Strategy Without Spending a Lot
Employees and even customers can participate in these feel-good programs, reducing the cost for the company. Notify the local newspaper, radio, and television stations through a press release to maximize community awareness of the program. The company should, if possible, either match donations or contribute more than the employees and customers.
Thanksgiving and Christmas Social Corporate Responsibility Ideas
1. Adopt a family – While adopting a family is probably the most common at Christmastime, businesses can adopt a family at Thanksgiving or any time during the winter months. A Thanksgiving adoption can include providing a hot meal for the family, or covering any other need mentioned by the family members. Churches, shelters, and most need-based agencies can provide names of families in need.
2. Food drive – Business can set up food drives to help feed the hungry in the community. Decorate and set up a large cardboard box where customers, employees, and community members can drop off non-perishable foods. The food can be distributed through a local food bank, church, or to a single family, depending on the success of the drive.
3. Coat drive – A coat drive makes a good winter and holiday project in cold climates. It is similar to a food drive because you set up a drop box and people can drop off new and gently used coats. Companies opting to hold a coat drive should ideally plan to pay for mending and cleaning the gently used coats.
4. Hat and mitten drive – A hat and mitten drive is a spin off of a coat drive. The advantage of a hat and mitten drive is the size. Not very much room is required for storing and transporting the hats and mittens. Donated items can also be displayed around the signs to draw attention to drive.
5. Holiday meal. This is the most costly idea listed here, but joining forces with other local businesses, churches, shelters, or food banks can cut costs for the business a while also providing a location for meal. To make this work, the business or businesses donate the food and location and either seek volunteers to prepare and serve the meal, or offer to pay their employees to help out.
While not a substitute for a year-round social corporate responsibility program, these ideas provide inexpensive ways a business can reach out to the community and promote good will during the winter holiday season.