Operating globally also entails taking on social responsibility on a global level. By being committed to social responsibility, we are making a positive contribution to society while also creating value for our company. Our activities focus on social welfare, road safety, education, science and sports. The following are a few examples.
We take on social responsibility mostly on a decentralized basis. Charitable projects, activities and donations are often initiated and organized by dedicated employees and supported by the company.
In particular emergency situations, Continental provides central support with national projects and challenges, or offers assistance in dealing with international humanitarian emergencies. In doing so, the corporation as a whole fulfills its social responsibility.
Support in international disasters
In September 2017, we supported the disaster relief in Texas, U.S.A., after the historic flooding caused by Hurricane Harvey. The donation, which went to the American Red Cross, consisted of an amount donated directly by Continental and an amount matching donations from employees. In addition to the company’s financial assistance, the employees at local sites became actively involved in the relief effort in Houston and other areas of southern Texas.
In October 2017, we supported the disaster relief in the areas of Mexico affected by the earthquake. In addition, we called on our employees in North America to donate money to the earthquake victims and we doubled the donated amount. In order to help the earthquake victims directly, our team in Mexico collected donations of food, household items and other necessities.
Continental supports charitable initiatives with financial donations both large and small, with donations of goods, and with active involvement. In this context, our employees show their strong social commitment as good neighbors locally.
Continental’s employees in Stöcken, Hanover, donated all the proceeds from their summer festival to an organization that takes care of children with burn injuries and their families. The initiative offers advice to affected families after burning and scalding accidents involving babies and children. Its main activities include advice and providing contacts during the hospital stay, assistance during rehabilitation and afterwards, and preventive measures.
In Thailand, many young people drive and are therefore exposed to the hazards of the road. Road safety is a particular concern for Continental. For four years, Continental employees have therefore been providing safety training for young drivers in cooperation with the Rayong highway police. Selected employees and members of the Thai highway police put on workshops to give students detailed information on what to look out for on the road. For example, how to protect themselves and others from hazards, what distinguishes a safe vehicle and the importance of wearing a helmet on mopeds and motorcycles.
Creating opportunities for refugees
Integrating people of different origins and cultural backgrounds is an important part of our corporate culture. For over a year, we have been working with the German Federal Employment Agency on a new, specially developed program that makes it easier for refugees to enter the job market. In this program, Continental offers refugees a work placement of up to 12 months.
This allows the participants – while receiving the standard remuneration for the first year of an apprenticeship – to obtain the qualification needed for an apprenticeship. Once completed, they have the chance to begin a company apprenticeship at Continental.
Supporting young jobseekers and inspiring love for Europe
Under the umbrella of the “Experiencing Europe” initiative, Continental has launched a program especially for young people. Together with the German Federal Employment Agency, we offer jobseekers aged between 18 and 25 short internships at company locations throughout the rest of Europe. The program is open to young adults with no professional experience or qualifications. The project is an initiative throughout all of Germany.
The aim is to help young people access the rest of Europe and thus strengthen the spirit of European community. We also see the project as an opportunity to discover potential employees and talented young people.
The pilot project for the initiative was launched at Continental in June 2017. Under the name “We l.o.v.e. Europe,” the first participants started foreign internships at Continental locations in Belgium, France, Hungary, Italy, Portugal, Romania and the United Kingdom. In the meantime, further companies have joined the “Experiencing Europe” initiative to give even more young adults the opportunity to gather professional experience in Europe.