The Philosophy of Corporate Giving
A Closer Look at the Philosophy of Corporate Philanthropy
Why have companies placed an increased emphasis on community giving? One might say: If one person can make a difference, think what one company — with thousands of employees — can do.
Makes sense, right?
Yes, it's true. Companies have more resources, more manpower and, most of all, more funds to share with the global community so the impact can be tremendous ― if the efforts are well-managed.
However, being a good corporate citizen is more than just writing a check to a nonprofit and checking 'complete' next to your external branding strategy. To make a meaningful difference, companies must integrate the process into its business model, strategically align community involvement with business initiatives and avoid diluting efforts by consciously focusing on areas where the greatest impact can be made. That's the recipe for success in today's global market.
Dell Gives Back
Since its beginnings in 1984, Dell has emerged as a global industry leader not only by making good business decisions, but also by maintaining its commitment to making a positive difference globally in the communities where its employees live and work.
Dell's giving approach is simple: Be a powerful force for change and help connect the youth of today with a more promising tomorrow.
By understanding where it can make the most impact and by keeping its growth priorities at the forefront, Dell is strategically using its own technology, funds and employee talent to initiate programs, in partnership with local nonprofit entities, across the globe.
Dell Technology in Action
Dell can't promise medical cures, but it knows where its technology can help change lives. Aligned to its priority of growth in emerging markets, Dell is working to bridge the technology gap among underserved youth. The corporation's signature giving program, Dell™ YouthConnect, promotes education and helps build math, science, literacy and technology skills among young people in these emerging markets.
Dell is also working to capitalize on our leadership position in the area of sustainability and to incorporate these efforts into our giving practices. For example, The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) and its Dell-supported Climate EduXchange. This program raises awareness of climate change among students in 10 Indian states and engages them in research and activism through the use of information and communications technology (ICT) tools. Or consider the Vele Secondary School in Limpopo, South Africa, where Dell supports a computer classroom in an environmentally responsible green school; rainwater in this arid region is harvested from the building roofs and paved areas to be stored in a tank farm. The campus also features organic food gardens that will help feed the students and their families. Or consider further the numerous programs Dell supports in community centers across Brazil and Mexico through the Center for Digital Inclusion (CDI), which teach young people to use technology to improve their communities and which have led to local cleanup efforts, water quality improvements and recycling initiatives.
Dell Employees in Action
Dell employees are its greatest asset, and it's their infectious spirit that serves as the driving force for Dell's community involvement. Thousands of employees around the globe represent an enormous opportunity to make a difference, and Dell has put in place many initiatives to promote employee involvement. From community involvement opportunities with local charitable organizations to corporate-wide campaigns, such as the One Dell: One Community campaign, employees are able to align their personal philanthropic passions with a charity of choice and share both their talents and time.
Dell's Financial Donations in Action
We became a 1 percent company — meaning that we gave 1 percent of our annual pretax profits — in 2010. In fiscal year 2011, we gave $35.2 million and impacted the lives of more than 2 million children globally.
The fact is there's only one earth. We must be mindful in our actions to protect our world and its people. It is this conscious understanding that sets the tone for Dell's giving efforts and drives all facets of its relationship to Dell's business practices and culture. Dell doesn’t claim to have created the recipe for global success through giving, but it hopes that through its actions it will continue to inspire a market-wide shift in corporate thinking to one of giving back and living responsibly to create a healthier, more connected world.
That's what being a good corporate citizen is all about.