Most children go to school and learn the alphabet along with basic life skills like hygiene. But what about those who are not able to attend school?
In Thailand, there are an estimated 330,000 children of migrant workers from neighbouring Cambodia, Laos and Myanmar; 60,000 of these children live on construction sites without access to basic hygiene or education. The Baan Dek Foundation is working to foster access to education, health and safety for vulnerable migrant children in collaboration with partners from the private and public sectors.
> Baan Dek foundation
Givaudan employees in Thailand recently decided to partner with the local Baan Dek Raeron foundation in Bangkok, dedicated to homeless children. The team of 17 volunteers representing a cross-section of functions within Givaudan worked with twenty children, aged from three to twelve years old, helping them to learn healthy behaviours like washing hands and brushing teeth. They also provided nutritious food to the children and donated money, clothing and toys.
Chonlada, Green Team Leader: “The children were eager to learn about hygiene and especially enjoyed working with a model mouth that showed them how to brush their teeth properly. They loved the way their hands smelled from the handwash and the fruity taste of the toothpaste. It’s inspiring to think that this first exposure to fragrances may one day lead a child to become a perfumer.”
The Bangkok initiative won top prize in the Commercial category of Givaudan’s Green Team Awards for 2015. The awards programme, which began in 2009, recognises local sustainability initiatives with a positive impact on communities, through social or charitable efforts, along with manufacturing performance and eco-efficiency.
Supporting local communities
It is not the first time that Givaudan’s Green Teams have reached out to support local communities through charitable and social projects.
After Givaudan chose Blindness as its corporate charitable theme, employees at our site in Mount Olive, New Jersey actively partnered with the township and state to create a ‘Braille Trail’. The initiative won the 2013 Green Team prize for manufacturing sites.
In 2014, employees at our Jigani site in Bangalore, India, were recognised with the manufacturing category award for their ‘Retinopathy of premature children’ programme, which sponsors infants in need of corrective laser surgery on their retinas to prevent vision loss or blindness. The team collaborated with the Vittala International Institute of Ophthalmology (VIIO), a charitable eye hospital in Bangalore, offering financial support to the organisation and its volunteers.