Corporate Social Responsibility (or CSR as it’s often called) isn’t just a buzzword. It’s about how an employer or a business ‘gives back’ to its community; it’s about not just being a place of work but about caring for the people and the place that the organisation has an impact on. It’s about how an organisation engages with the people who work there, and making sure that it carries out its business in a sustainable and environmentally responsible way.
It’s about being a good ‘corporate citizen’ in the local community and at CHFT, we want this too.
In a nutshell we want to 1) reduce waste and carbon emissions 2) increase income raised through our very own NHS Charity, so that we can ‘do more’, we can improve and enhance services for our patients, visitors and colleagues and 3) be much more involved and engaged within our local communities.
Basically, we want to be known as a top-notch example of a great organisation within our local communities; and share wonderful stories about our own Corporate Social Responsibility impact.
We have a huge impact within our local communities; thousands of people who live in Calderdale or Kirklees have either been a patient of ours in the past; is currently being looked after by us; or have a friend or member of their family who has been cared for by us …… that’s a lot of people. Over 362,000 every year to be exact!
But not only that, we are one of the largest employers in the local area, with nearly 6,000 of us working at CHFT and Calderdale and Huddersfield Solutions (CHS - our colleagues who look after our buildings and things like catering and cleaning on our Huddersfield site). We mostly live locally, shop locally, have children who go to local schools and nurseries, and have partners and loved ones who are also employed locally.
These numbers mean that we have a huge impact on our local area. Because of this, it’s really important that we act responsibly as we go about our business of healthcare. We need to be top notch - making sure we are talking, listening, being supportive, and taking action in the best interests of our communities and our environment.
Corporate Social Responsibility is not just about local people and communities; we also have a huge impact upon our environment. How? Through the energy we consume; the supplies we need; the miles we travel on the roads; and the waste that we produce. Because of all this, we need to make sure we are a responsible, ‘green corporate citizen’ and where possible, reduce our energy, waste and environmental impact ……and we need to share how we are getting on with all this!
Nationally there are some huge numbers……..the UK is committed to reducing carbon emissions to net zero by 2050. Carbon emissions mean the harmful carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases that planes, cars and organisations produce. That target’s great but our local authorities (Calderdale and Kirklees Councils) don’t think this goes far enough. They have declared a ‘climate emergency’. Our two local authorities together with our Trust are part of the wider West Yorkshire Combined Authority and want to reduce carbon even more quickly.
Did you know there are 250 NHS Charities up and down the UK, who together raise over £1m every single day for their local NHS Trusts?
Closer to home, did you know that we have our very own NHS Charity? Together with our communities and staff, we raise funds to ‘Help Our Trust Do More’?
There are a fair few legal obligations, and a range of bodies who oversee our CSR activities. These bodies range from the Charity Commission; the Fundraising Regulator & Gambling Commission; the Environment Agency; and the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. The regulations include the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), the Health and Safety at Work Act and the Hazardous Waste Regulations.
Rather than just comply with them, we want to be an outstanding example of corporate social responsibility. We are committed to protecting ourselves, our activities, our Trust, our donors and our communities.
We will know how we are doing by monitoring and measuring our activities, performance and results. We will do this by:
Tracking our charitable activity. This isn’t just about how much we raise or receive in donations. It’s also about measuring how engaged and involved people feel at work, and about how many people turn up to our charitable events. We will capture information about who our donors are; how we stay in touch with them so that we keep their support; the type of activities we have and how successful they are; and the value of our donations – and of course the impact our charity is making.
CHS is working on a carbon baseline for the Trust. This means that we can use this to set targets for reducing our carbon emissions. We’ll measure our progress against what we said we’d do in the Green Plan. We also know how much waste we are producing. We’ll do two things: we’ll set targets to reduce the amount of overall waste; and where we can, we’ll increase waste recycling. We can only do this with collective effort of colleagues, patients and visitors. Keep an eye on The Cupboard communications stories for news of how you can do your bit.