In light of Rwanda’s struggles towards uplifting people from the ashes of a tormenting past, efforts of institutions especially profit oriented companies in socioeconomic transformational interventions are paramount in arriving on intended results.
Referred to as Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), support to the wellbeing and thriving of social and economic development of communities is an ethical engagement required of all responsible companies.
In practice, CSR is the continued commitment of businesses to behave ethically and contribute to economic development while improving the quality of life of the workforce and their families, as well as of the local community and society at large.
In Rwanda, such commitments of both private sector and public institutions are overly important since they play a key role in addressing various out comings of the genocide of 1994 against the Tutsi including among others the orphans and widow challenges that the country faces.
Hence with interests to recognize the role of institutions in the process of social economic transformation, a CSR Award was sought after by a group well willing individuals.
According to Bishop Emeritus John Rucyahana, the Awards’ Patron, they (awards) will seek to point at the best CSR practices through recognizing best performers at the same.
“They (awards) intend to say thank you to the supportive corporate while at the same time alluring others to take suit,” Rucyahana noted during a media briefing on Saturday in Kigali.
The renowned Bishop added that the CSR Awards will seek to revive, build and preserve the spirit and culture of care, support and giving among Rwandan businesses.
Awards will be given in categories of social community support, environmental sustainability, poverty alleviation, workforce and marketplace, education excellence, innovation, and CSR Leader Awards.
Each category will have an annual winner of the accolade.
To enroll for the awards, an institution is required to be a registered business/company operating in Rwanda, to have engaged in a community support activity in at least the past one year in addition to the willingness to register and share some of its previous community activities.
In the past, companies have been accused of engaging in CSR only for brand visibility and not support of communities per se. Rucyahana concurred and equally assured that the Awards’ management is aware of such, and noted that a key element for a winning activity will be its sustainability.
“The jury is made up of respected personalities and we believe that these Awards will exhibit high ethical standards.”
Besides the sustainability feature, winning CSR projects will be judged based on their impact, engagement of other and many players, and the exercise of partnerships.
The team of judges for the CSR Awards’ Jury includes, Apostle Alice Mignonne, Senator Tito Rutaremara, Hon. Marie Claire Mukasine, Prof. Anastase Shyaka, and Mr. Robert Bayigamba.