Green cooperation. Up! for volunteering

By Sergio González | 11:22

One of the major criticisms from the international community against developing countries, as we saw in UN Conference for Sustainable development Rio20 last June, is that the  latter are destroying their rain forests or spoiling their water sources on their way out of poverty, as Europe or North America did in the past centuries.

It’s true that some countries are so eager to develop that they don’t pay due attention to their environment but it doesn’t mean they are not concerned at all; with some little help, success cases of green economy can occur. Romania or Kenya are perfect examples of developing countries that will make it through a sustainability path of cooperation.

We speak of high polluting countries and green cities as entities but actually it’s the performing agents’ impact what’s measured. Companies have a much bigger one than households in environment health or good trading practices that, eventually, become a worse or better life for all of us.

Corporate conscience or CSR -Corporate Social Responsibility- is the fancy term to describe the social performance of any company or organization, meaning how respectful, fair and thoughtful they are towards trade, human society and the Earth.

It seems obvious that Ethics should be an essential part of any company -as well as for us- but relating them to business causes discomfort among some hard core positions because Ethics are supposed to distract the company from its main economic role, getting them engaged in things like fair trade or local community development.

There are enough examples of highly profitable companies which also happen to be socially responsible that we can come to understand that it’s not a distraction but a successful reality.

In 2010, the voting for ISO 26000 took place. Check out the yeas and nays to find about some surprises. Apart from anything else supergreen, Germany didn’t feel responsible but China took the chance to tell the world they want to change their ways.

This odd ISO is not even a regulation but an aim. Companies that accomplish the seven parts of social responsibility -corporate govern, human rights and HR, fair trade, environment care, consumers satisfaction and local community development- are not certified in any way, but at least ISO 26000 exists.

The best part of this ISO behavior is that companies have to fit their social programs in their everyday practice, so eventually they became part of who they are

Some time ago, NH Hoteles realized it could make its impact in the world positive beyond profitable.

Our partnership with a hydropower plant in Brazil or the huge use of solar cells in our hotels it’s in the way of making us able to supply clean energy to society instead of consuming polluting one.

In Madrid we work with medical ONGs to provide free accommodation in NH Alcalá for parents whose children are at hospital.

NH Hoteles also thought it could help people who needed a friendlier hand in life by doing what it’s best at, hotel management.

Our social projects try to embrace all kind of chances to help, in many different countries and environments, because unfortunately poverty and exclusion is not private to any place in the world.

NH Hoteles staff teaches young people at risk of social exclusion in Europe how a hotel works, giving them the chance to build a career in hospitality industry as their possible future during International Corporate Volunteer Week. Through online cooperation, the Atlantic pond became smaller between our staff in Salamanca, Spain, and University of Villarrica in Paraguay.

Our most ambitious project is an aid program for local communities in developing countries to help them improve their tourism industry standards and business management. 

In Tigray, Ethiopia, we built a hospitality school and two NH enthusiast employees spend time with the local community teaching them the know-how of hotel management. Read here about the great time they had.

If you want to help making the world a better place, consider that simple things such as help serving food for the homeless or visit the elderly can really make a difference in many people’s lives, hence change the world.

 

 

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