Director of Communications and CSR, Fidelity Ireland
The pandemic has had a devastating impact on our society, businesses are now adapting their CSR initiatives to help support those in need.
The last 18 months have been like no other and a demand to support local communities in meaningful ways during the pandemic crisis has become a priority. Businesses had to quickly expand their CSR strategies to support the most vulnerable people in our society through corporate fundraising initiatives.
Supporting the vulnerable
Fidelity’s long-established CSR program, Fidelity Cares, traditionally focused on supporting education and employability, namely in the STEM sector. During the pandemic they have expanded their focus to supporting older people in need.
Penny Bryant, Director of Communications and CSR at Fidelity Ireland explains, “In response to associate ambitions to support others during the COVID-19 crisis, we have partnered with Age Action, who have an established support system with some of the most vulnerable in our society.”
Pivoting to an online approach, Fidelity hosted employee events and initiatives to raise awareness and money for Age Action. Comedy shows, family quizzes, singing, nutrition and mindfulness workshops, as well as random acts of kindness were among the calendar of events to mobilise their 1,400 strong employee bases, to give back in ways that they too could enjoy.
In response to associate ambitions to support others during the COVID-19 crisis, we have partnered with Age Action, who have an established support system with some of the most vulnerable in our society.
Solidarity across generations
Caroline O’Connell, Age Action Head of Fundraising describes the impact COVID-19 has had on the vulnerable in society, particularly the elderly. “Throughout COVID-19, we have seen a lot of talking about older people and not enough talking to older people about the decisions that affect them.
“To strengthen our communities and create solidarity across generations, we launched the Age Action Big Corporate Challenge in 2021. The programme enables corporate teams to raise funds and awareness to support our work of promoting intergenerational connection.
“We’re delighted to have Fidelity Investments participating in the programme in its first year, and excited to see the challenge grow with more corporate teams that value diversity, equality and inclusion joining each year!”
Bryant continues, ‘The ’Paying It Forward’ campaign was a huge success. This campaign essentially meant that for every volunteering hour, charitable deed, or random act of kindness undertaken by a Fidelity employee, the company would make a donation to Age Action. This volunteer-match or ‘Paying It Forward’ initiative allowed employees to get creative, while helping a great cause.’
From donations to clothes banks to helping older relatives re-fit their kitchen cabinets, the response to this campaign was outstanding, and a truly heartwarming reflection of the charitable community within the company.