In a bid to align its corporate social investment with its business strategy, ContinuitySA has entered into a three-year partnership with Habitat for Humanity. In terms of the new programme, ContinuitySA will build a house a year as part of the Raising a Roof initiative.
The Habitat for Humanity model requires the sponsoring company to fund the materials for building a house, and to supply the labour to build it. It is also a condition that the beneficiary of the project contributes his or her sweat equity.
Cindy Bodenstein, ContinuitySA's marketing manager, explains: "As Africa's leading business continuity provider, we provide our clients with reliable infrastructure and even a second 'home' at need — now we wanted to provide that same sense of security by providing good, solid homes to people who need them."
Bodenstein says that, in line with King III recommendations, ContinuitySA believes in being a responsible corporate citizen, and this programme is part of demonstrating that commitment to the wider community.
"Another factor in our thinking is the realisation that our success is built on the skills and passion of our people, and our ability to attract and retain them is related to our status as an 'employer of choice'," she says. "We were excited by the Habitat for Humanity model because it goes beyond a monetary donation and involves our employees in the process."
The partnership between ContinuitySA and Habitat for Humanity has already borne fruit, with the first house completed in early September. "Our staff volunteers were really inspired by their participation, and we already have people wanting to get involved in next year's project," notes Bodenstein.