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Corporate Social Responsibility in the Face of Disaster

In recent years, reports have increasingly linked business success with corporate social responsibility. Corporations are teaming up with the nonprofit sector more than ever before, and they are proving to be a powerful ally to nonprofits. In fact, a recent Conference Board survey concluded that, for roughly two out of three large North American corporations, using philanthropy to advance their business goals is a top priority.

The recent natural disasters in America have sparked a new influx of corporate giving. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce estimates that companies have pledged over $157 billion in disaster-relief funds to organizations responding to the aftermath of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. These estimates continue to increase as contributions pour in. Employee donation-matching programs are bringing in even more funds. As Marc DeCourcey, the Senior Vice President of the Chamber of Commerce Foundation noted, “The corporate response thus far been strong.”

Here is short list of companies that have pledged to help the victims of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma:

Apple: Pledged $5 million to the Hand in Hand effort, in addition to $3 million donated to the Red Cross.

Bank of America: Employees donated $754,000, which the company then matched. Bank of America then donated an additional $3.5 million to relief efforts of both storms.

CVS: CVS announced that they will donate $200,000 in in-kind and cash donations, as well as $50,000 to both the Greater Houston Community Foundation and the Red Cross. They will also donate $25,000 to the Salvation Army and match employee donations up to $25,000.

Dell: Michael Dell, the founder of Dell Technologies, pledged $36 million to relief efforts. This is the largest donation to date that is aimed at disaster-recovery efforts.

Google: Google gave a $250,000 grant to the Red Cross and will also match employee donations up to $250,000.

PepsiCo: Pepsi has donated $1 million to the Red Cross for relief efforts in Texas. It will also provide purified drinking water to areas impacted by the storm.

Verizon: Verizon has donated $10 million to disaster relief efforts.

PetSmart: PetSmart will be giving $1 million to animal welfare agencies that are working to rescue and relocate animals that were affected by Hurricane Harvey. They will also donate in-kind donations of pet food and supplies to these organizations.

Walmart: Walmart has committed to a $30 million donation to hurricane relief.

Large corporations are taking the lead in terms of donating to disaster recovery organizations. But this doesn’t mean that your own business–small or large– can’t contribute as well! Consider implementing an employee donation matching initiative to encourage employees to donate to the relief efforts. Every donation will count in the months and years ahead.

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