OUR COMMITMENTS – PILLAR #3
As a member of the Éram Group, we share its humanitarian values. To make sure our initiatives have maximum impact, we have chosen to focus our efforts on what we consider to be two key challenges: education and community. Education because it is the key to employment and individual fulfilment, and community because “living together” and supporting each other is something close to our heart.
Education with l’UNICEF
Since 2015, we have supported UNICEF’s preschool programme in Dhaka, capital of Bangladesh. This has enabled almost 12,000 children to benefit from age-appropriate early learning activities since 2015.
The UNICEF programme we support includes training teachers from the local community and ensuring that learning centres are brought up to standard.
The UNICEF project we are supporting in 2019 will help some of the most vulnerable children in Bangladesh, living in the slums of Dhaka.
It has been proven that attending school from nursery onwards significantly improves a child’s chances of succeeding at primary school.
Educating girls is the best way to make tomorrow’s world a fairer and more human place.
Tina Kiefer, founder & chair of “Toutes à l’école”
With “Toutes à l’école”
Girls represent less than one third of the global school population. This prompted the journalist Tina Kieffer to set up the charity “Toutes à l’école” in 2005. Its mission was to offer a high level of education to girls from some of the most disadvantaged families, so they could pursue a career that would allow them to live in freedom and dignity.
In 2006, “Toutes à l’école” chose to build its first school in Cambodia, where we have a presence. Happy Chandara, the pilot school located 12 km from the capital Phnom Penh, now has nine hundred and sixty-six students from primary school through to Year 9. About a hundred girls start their education there every year.
We have been sponsoring a class of Year 9 students since 2013. Girls who choose a traditional study pathway are supported by us until they start university and those who opt for vocational training are supported until they find their first job.
New classes, from Year 9 to Year 13, are opening up regularly. In 2018, more than a thousand students were able to benefit from this high-quality education!
Supporting The Agence du Don en Nature
The Agence du Don en Nature (Goods to Give Agency) helps people in need by supplying them with non-food products such as clothing, shoes, hygiene and cleaning products, miscellaneous goods and toys.
The agency coordinates the activities of 620 partner charities throughout France, who distribute new products donated by sponsor companies to 750,000 people who need them.
We have been donating clothing to the Agence du Don en Nature since 2015. This partnership also helps us to reduce our waste even further and manage unsold stock
Solidarity is about not tolerating exclusion.
Supporting the charity “Apprentis d’Auteuil”
We are proud to be partners of the “Apprentis d’Auteuil” (Apprentices of Auteuil) foundation. With around two hundred centres supporting young people and families with social, financial or legal difficulties, it mainly focuses on young people who have dropped out of school and helps young graduates to find work. It also supports local projects that offer help with parenting, such as crèches, mother-and-baby centres and family centres.
Charity clearance sales
Twice a year, we organise a large charity clearance sale on our premises where we sell samples, old stock, etc. to our employees. All proceeds from the sale are then donated to charities or good causes chosen by our employees.
Every year, we set up “medical camps” in the countries in which we operate, close to our production centres. In the south of India, around three hundred people have benefited from medical check-ups and essential medicines.
Collaborative project with Bangladeshi firefighters
For better relations with the local populations, we chose to use the services of the fire brigade of Bangladesh, the Fire Service Civil Defense (FSCD), to control the fire safety of our textile workshops in this country. It was a great opportunity to give the local firefighters all the pride to protect their fellow citizens themselves.
In 2016, we signed a partnership agreement with General Ali, the central director of the Bangladesh Civil Security, under which it is our responsibility to train the FSCD teams in our audit methods. Today, they are the ones who carry out these audits within our partner workshops.
This award-winning initiative in 2017 makes Gemo the first private foreign company to have developed a local solution to improve the safety of workers in the textile sector. A pride for us.
All our stores regularly hold round-up donation drives. The principle is simple: when customers reach the till, they are asked to round up their spend to the nearest euro. This small change makes a big difference, as is automatically donated to charities that support education in our local areas. But our solidarity doesn’t end there! We are proud and pleased to be part of a community with our customers and employees, contributing to meaningful projects that help to build connections.
Nos quartiers ont du talent
We have partnered with Nos Quartiers ont du Talent (Our Neighbourhoods have Talent), which works to promote equal opportunities. The charity helps young graduates from disadvantaged areas or “in complex situations” to find work.
As part of the programme, any employee who wishes to do so can sponsor a young person until he or she finds a job in a suitable field. The aim is to foster confidence and independence.
This initiative is particularly important to us, as it focuses on helping to educate young people in specific areas and it directly involves our employees. If our employees wish to do so, they can offer to share their experience with young people who would really benefit from it, as they would do with members of their own family.
We have partnered with the Association Lazare, which works to overcome exclusion and vulnerability by offering an alternative to the usual large hostels: cosier apartments that people who were previously homeless share with young, working volunteers aged 25 to 35.
The aim of the charity is to give the most vulnerable in society a roof over their heads and some human warmth, helping them to rebuild social ties. Kindness and good humour are the watchwords in this open environment, where everyone feels welcome and has the opportunity to develop hitherto little-known talents!
Lazare embodies the values that are dear to us such as sharing and fostering independence. Housework, shopping, preparing meals—all residents are expected to participate in daily life and pay their share of communal costs so that the accommodation can pay for itself.
Present in seven French cities including Marseille, Angers, Lyon and Toulouse, the Association Lazare was awarded the “La France s’engage” label by the government in 2016. We are proud to support the Lazare accommodation in Nantes, which currently houses forty-five residents.
ALL OUR PROJETS
Not forgetting …
Gémo’s solidarity doesn’t end with the projects we’ve just shown you. Read more about the others here.
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