The JPMorgan Chase Foundation and the Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund Announce Major Nationwide Effort in Support of Under-Banked Households
The JPMorgan Chase Foundation and Cities for Financial Empowerment (CFE) Fund today announced the creation of Bank On 2.0, a new effort to create a unified, national approach to delivering safe, affordable banking products and services to low-income and under-banked people through municipal programs across the country. The CFE Fund’s mission is to help cities design financial empowerment strategies and embed them into local government programs to improve the financial capability of low- and moderate-income households. The JPMorgan Chase Foundation’s $1.15 million seed funding commitment is a two-year grant that will complement the CFE Fund's raising of matching funds from other partner organizations, including other financial institutions.
Bank On 2.0 will build on the grassroots success of a wide array of Bank On and related banking access programs in cities across the country, like San Francisco and Seattle. Bank On programs have already connected tens of thousands of under-banked people to safe and affordable financial products at institutions, ranging from local community banks to global financial institutions. Bank On 2.0 will identify best practices and build a national, evidence-based strategy that will help people, who might otherwise be subject to costly alternative financial services, access basic, safe and affordable bank services.
The ultimate goal is to create a national approach and infrastructure that includes...
U.S. Chamber Foundation and The UPS Foundation Launch Effort To Build Businesses' Resilience in Turkey
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Business Civic Leadership Center (BCLC) and UPS (NYSE:UPS) today launched the “Sağlam Kobi” pilot program in Turkey, an effort to help create disaster-resilient businesses, promote preparedness, and accelerate recovery after disasters. The UPS Foundation, a member of the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council on Catastrophic Risks, provided a $460,000 grant to underwrite the program.
“We believe this project is of great benefit to the people and economies of both countries,” said Alfonso Martinez-Fonts, executive vice president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation. “Not just because it promotes disaster resilience, but because it promotes communication, collaboration and goodwill between the public and private sectors of both nations,”
Turkey is a high-risk natural disaster location, particularly for earthquakes, which have cost the country an estimated $2.9 billion over the past decade. For this reason, the World Economic Forum’s Global Agenda Council recommended it as the pilot site for developing a collaborative approach to promote disaster resilience among small and medium-sized businesses. This new initiative will foster collaboration between civil society and the private sector and will enhance community disaster recovery.
“Our hope is that this community resilience initiative will not only help build stronger and safer communities in Turkey, but can also be leveraged to enhance preparedness...
In August, BCLC supporter companies the Shell Oil Company, Western Union, IBM, and Deloitte joined me in Moore, OK for a corporate delegation trip. The trip was sponsored by Shell and gave participants an opportunity to meet local community leaders that are working to get the community up and running again after the tornado. After spending a few days in Moore, I can say that I was extremely impressed.
We purposely took the trip a few months after the disaster for a few reasons. First, we didn’t want to overwhelm the local leaders with our presence during the response phase. Now that recovery in Moore has started, we felt it was an appropriate time to visit. Second, after most disasters, a lot of money and resources pour into a community immediately, and many of those resources dry up quickly after that. We have heard from many communities that struggle when initial relief turns to recovery. This especially happens during the “in between time,” between when initial relief resources come in, and when communities receive federal government recovery dollars that often come from US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).
Brenda Roberts, CEO of the Moore Chamber of Commerce and Deidre Ebrey, Director of Marketing and Economic Development for the City of Moore led...
UPS (NYSE:UPS) has once again been recognized for its leadership in the areas of sustainability and technology.
For the third year in a row, UPS secured a top position on the CDP’s global Climate Disclosure Leadership Index (CDLI). UPS ranked in the top five percent of companies measured, with a score of 99 out of 100. The CDP, formerly known as the Carbon Disclosure Project, works with its shareholders, customers and governments to measure and disclose environmental information. UPS has been recognized for this achievement since 2008.
The Dow Jones selected UPS for its Dow Jones Sustainability World Index, placing the organization among the top 10 percent of sustainability performers out of the 2,500 companies in the Dow Jones Global Total Stock Market Index. Companies are selected based on a comprehensive assessment of long-term economic, environmental and social criteria, as well as industry-specific sustainability trends. This marks the ninth consecutive year that UPS has been selected for the North America Index.
InformationWeek published its annual ranking of the top 500 innovative companies and ranked UPS #45. The ranking tracks the IT practices of the nation's most innovative IT organizations, providing an opportunity to understand and examine the business practices across core areas of operations.
For more information, visit the UPS...
"How can you say they [the British East India Company] were socially responsible?" she asked. "We're from a former British Colony and they were just awful."
"Well, we with our modern eyes may not like their social missions of colonization and Christianization, but those were social missions nonetheless," I responded. "Part of what I want you to come away with from this [History of Surprising Figures in Western Corporate Responsibility], is to realize that social consciousness is in the DNA of corporations...sometimes it's just misplaced or dormant. Your challenge is to reawaken it and focus it."
I don't know if the thirty visiting social entrepreneurs from around the world invited by the U.S. State Department to hear me speak at the US Chamber of Commerce planned on getting a history lesson, but that's what I gave them. From England's Queen Elizabeth I (who signed the charter of one of the world's very first corporations) to GE's Jeffrey Immelt (who rescued Ecomagination from the dustbin of history), we went through a cavalcade of philanthropists, nay-sayers, and pioneers. What stood out for me is how often the social responsibility of one era has to unwind the unintended consequences of the social responsibility of another.
The best and brightest of Elizabethan England thought colonization and Christianization along with imperialism and mercantilism were great ideas. While we may hope we've put ethnocentrism behind us, even as these thirty visiting...
By: Andy McCormick, Vice President, Public Affairs, The Hershey Company
The Ghana Cocoa Board (COCOBOD), The Hershey Company, and the World Cocoa Foundation (WCF) introduced a first-of-its-kind program that uses mobile technology to deliver practical information on agricultural and social programs to rural cocoa farmers and enables them to ask questions and provide feedback.
The program, called “CocoaLink—Connecting Cocoa Communities,” will make use of Ghana’s rapidly developing mobile phone infrastructure. It also builds on the existing WCF education and literacy programs that successfully reach more than 8,000 Ghanaian cocoa farmers and community members in 15 pilot communities in the important cocoa-growing regions of Western Ghana.
The innovative program will use mobile technology to connect cocoa farmers with useful information about improving farming practices, farm safety, child labor, health, crop disease prevention, post-harvest production, and crop marketing. Through voice and SMS text messages delivered in their local language or English, cocoa farmers will receive the information at no charge. They also will be able to share information and receive answers to specific questions relating to their cocoa farming livelihoods.
“This program offers an innovative, yet simple, way to get critical information to...
[Editor's Note: Don’t miss your opportunity to discuss the future of ICT and energy use with Verizon’s Executive Director of Public Policy and Corporate Responsibility, Chris Lloyd at BCLC’s October conference The Network Effect: How Business Drives Progress.]
The report demonstrates that the abatement potential of Information Communications Technology (ICT) is seven times the size of the ICT sector’s direct emissions. ICT-enabled solutions offer the potential to reduce annual emissions by an estimated 9.1 GtCO2e (gigatons of carbon dioxide equivalent) by 2020, representing 16.5 percent of the projected total in that year.
Of significant importance, SMARTer2020 demonstrates how ICT-enabled solutions offer the opportunity to sustainably grow the world’s economies.
Specifically, the report’s findings demonstrate that ICT is an important tool in facilitating the transition to a low carbon economy; maximizing the energy efficiency savings...
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s Business Civic Leadership Center (BCLC) today announced Marc DeCourcey as its new executive director. DeCourcey will lead the Chamber Foundation’s initiatives to help businesses improve and grow their corporate responsibility programs and community impacts.
“Marc understands the important role businesses play in solving the world’s biggest social challenges,” said David Chavern, executive vice president and COO of the U.S. Chamber. “His proven leadership and previous experience in forming innovative, cross-sector partnerships will help drive BCLC’s continued impact and growth.”
Prior to joining BCLC, DeCourcey served as vice president of strategic partnerships at the American Red Cross. In this role, he fostered partnerships with a diverse group of organizations that helped grow the reach and presence of the organization. Previously, DeCourcey served as chief of staff to American Red Cross president and CEO Gail McGovern and was senior director of federal relations. In addition to his experience with the American Red Cross, he has worked as chief of staff at the Office of Legislation and Congressional Affairs at the U.S. Department of Education and as executive director for the Massachusetts Republican Party.
“BCLC’s work shows the remarkable ability of business to innovate and work together to solve problems,” said DeCourcey. “I’m honored to join the...
Businesses everywhere recognize the power and influence of social media. And besides, everyone is doing it. So, it’s a necessity for your company, too. Right?
This over-simplistic view can get your company into trouble quickly. So, it’s important to approach social media strategically. This means knowing why you should use social media; identifying how it can best compliment (and complement) your existing communication and marketing strategies; measuring effectiveness to ensure goals are reached; and monitoring it to protect your reputation.
Ask yourself the following four questions to help you determine if you are leveraging these communication channels fully and effectively:
What do you really hope to accomplish by using social media?
Clarify objectives. Know the types of messages you want to communicate and the frequency with which you want to share news. Understand where and how your target audience uses social media. Then, conduct research. After thoroughly analyzing your options, carefully select the best form of social media for your purposes. Be sure to determine how you can measure success and incorporate processes to do so into your plan. That way, you’ll be able to tell if you achieved what you set out to do.
Judging from the popularity of reality TV chef competitions, fascination with food is at an all-time high. Look no further than the volume of food infotainment shows about food production (The Chew), preparation (Kitchen Nightmares), consumption (Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations), and cooking tips (Rachel Ray). This used to be the territory of gourmands and epicures. Now, with everybody tuning in, the populist term is “Foodies.”
Those looking for hardy food-for-thought on this trend have been digesting Michael Pollan’s Omnivore’s Dilemma—on the “politics and pleasure of eating”—and Joel Salatin’s Folks, This ain’t Normal which proffers “a farmer’s advice for happier hens, healthier people, and a better world.” As frequent travelers, foodies, and advocates for sustainability and social innovation, we have spent the last several months as culinary tourists in the U.S., Europe, and Asia.
We found plenty that “ain’t normal” but also lots of innovation underway in the journey from farm to food to you. Let’s start with the USA.
Corporate Farming ain’t Normal
Our travelogue starts with the GEL (Good Experience Live) conference April 17-19, 2013, in New York City. The gathering featured talks about urban development with the High-Line public park and the Governor’s Island serving as the backdrop for the conference. On rural matters, Joel Salatin spoke about how religious faith...