Global commitment to education
LANXESS has also initiated projects focusing particularly on the promotion of science education at almost all its sites across the globe. We are involved in a wide range of projects and initiatives in Brazil, Argentina, India, China and South Africa especially.
Social Activities by Topic1)
Social Activities by Region1)
Our local activities in Brazil have been merged under the “e3” initiative. “e3” stands for education, ecology and economy. South America’s largest country has some catching up to do, particularly in the fields of environmental protection and education. We aim to use our expertise to offer effective support in this area.
Since 2010, for example, we have been fostering scientific knowledge and environmental awareness at our Brazilian sites with our Green Cycle competition. The winners receive recognition for the environmental protection projects they develop for the competition and LANXESS fully finances implementation of these projects. Participants additionally receive assistance from an agency that specializes in implementing environmental projects. We also provide financial support to this agency. Since the competition began, we have successfully initiated 23 projects that have benefited more than 5,000 people. In addition, our employees in Brazil have participated in Community Day since 2011 and spend the day providing practical assistance to facilities such as kindergartens, hospitals, schools and social centers. Around 15% of our employees around the country took part in 2013.
The “Educar para Crecer” (Educate to Grow) initiative in Argentina aims to promote development in the Zárate region by supporting schools and not-for-profit organizations engaged in educational, social and environmental protection activities there. As part of this initiative, we provide funding for sustainable education projects and help those wishing to launch such projects by delivering the fundamental know-how they need. In 2013, the sixth year of the program addressed elementary schools and technical colleges. Six projects qualified for funding. More than 8,500 people have already benefited directly or indirectly from the projects implemented since the program was launched in 2007.
The “La Basura Sirve” (Waste is Useful) initiative launched in Zárate in 2012 also seeks to promote responsible environmental practices. The program, which we conduct in collaboration with a group of schools, encourages the collection and sorting of inorganic household waste. The income from the sale of reusable materials to recycling companies is used by the participating schools to purchase essential items. Some 4,500 students were involved in the second year of the program, collecting more than 5,000 kilograms of PET waste that was then sent for reuse.
An important CR project in India is the long-term Teach for India program, part of the Teach to Lead initiative. The program recruits top graduates from Indian universities as fellows who, after completing their studies, spend an initial period of two years teaching full-time at schools with insufficient funding. Our financial support to date, which amounted to €50,000 each year, has funded 18 fellows in various Indian towns and cities. Given the great success of the initiative, we decided in 2013 to continue our support for Teach for India for a further five years and increase the annual budget to €75,000.
In April 2013, we awarded the first three scholarships under our new partnership with the Indian organization HUM. We will be financing top-quality musical training for three visually impaired students over a period of five years. In addition, we provided support to the Jidd School in Thane, an educational establishment for differently abled children and adolescents, to procure essential teaching materials.
In Nagda, where we have a production facility, we installed state-of-the-art water purification and cooling equipment for public use at four central locations in the city. We also donated a 42-seater bus to Nagda to facilitate travel to the city’s Government College for around 500 students, many of whom face a difficult journey to class. In this way, it is hoped to increase attendance levels.
In 2013, we collaborated with the Goethe Institute in China to launch the LANXESS-PASCH Dream Career Program. Two students from the Goethe Institute’s partner schools were given the opportunity to complete a four-week internship with LANXESS in Shanghai. In Liyang, we continued the program we launched in 2012 to provide support for students who are particularly gifted or very committed. The number of young people who have received a LANXESS scholarship increased from 36 in 2012 to 69 in 2013. By contrast, our long-standing collaboration with Shaanxi University of Science and Technology celebrated its 20th anniversary. Under this program, we award scholarships and offer internships to selected students.
Since 2011, we have been the main sponsor of the Rally to Read initiative in the KwaZulu-Natal region of South Africa, which aims to reduce the significant difference in reading and writing skills between students in rural areas and their urban counterparts. Twelve schools were provided with items such as teacher training guides, container libraries, writing materials, sports equipment, educational toys and school shoes worth around €35,000. More than 2,000 children benefited from the campaign. Their progress is regularly monitored by the local education authorities and the READ Trust, partner of the Rally to Read initiative.
An initiative in the United States fully reflects our commitment to corporate volunteering. As part of a new partnership with Junior Achievement, 15 LANXESS employees visited first- to third-grade classes in a school district near Pittsburgh to teach basic aspects of economics and entrepreneurship.