Integrated Annual Report 2015
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Social Engagement

Focus on water

With innovative sanitary products, Geberit continuously improves the quality of people's lives. The company rigorously pursues this mission. The new edition of the guideline for employees, the  Geberit Compass, sets this out.

The Group's social engagement is also about quality of life and sustainability. This is why it has for many years undertaken social projects that exhibit a relationship to the topic of water as well as to its core competencies and corporate culture. Equally important is the aspect of personal and professional education: by becoming actively involved in the social projects in developing regions of this world, apprentices become familiar with other cultures and acquire new social, linguistic and professional skills. Furthermore, the Group's social engagement in the form of social projects makes a tangible contribution to implementing the follow-up programme of the Millennium Development Goals of the United Nations, which seeks to give all humans access to clean drinking water and basic sanitation by 2030.

Tangible commitment – global and diverse

In a repeat of 2012, the apprentices visited South Africa in 2015, this time close to the port of Durban in Kwazulu-Natal province. This is the location of the  Cottonlands Primary School. Around 1,000 pupils attend the school, which was originally designed to accommodate around 500 children and was in urgent need of an infrastructure upgrade. The local Geberit sales company planned and oversaw the preparatory construction work. In November and December, the Geberit team, with apprentices from Germany, Austria and Switzerland, went to the school to install new sanitary installations and perform valuable voluntary work for orphan children in the neighbouring “LIV village”.

The partnership with the Swiss development organisation Helvetas was renewed for another two years. Geberit once again supported the Helvetas campaign for clean drinking water and latrines, with a substantial contribution. The volunteering project in Nepal that had been planned for 2015 in partnership with Helvetas and with the involvement of Geberit employees was postponed by a year, because of the earthquake in the spring of 2015.

The cooperation with the non-profit organisation Swiss Water Partnership was continued in the reporting year. The goal of this platform is to bring together all those involved in the topic of water supply (from academic, economic as well as public and private spheres) to collectively address future challenges and promote international dialogue on water.

A multitude of initiatives and collection campaigns round off the Geberit Group's social commitment at the local level. As a basic principle, all social projects and the use of funds are regularly checked by Geberit employees in the respective country or in partnership with non-governmental organisations (NGOs).

In addition, a number of Geberit production plants have for many years been awarding packing and assembly work to workshops for people with mental disabilities. In 2015, the volume of such orders was CHF 6.2 million.

For an overview of donations and financial contributions, see  Investments in infrastructure and services primarily for public benefit. All of Geberit’s donations and related commitments are neutral from a party political point of view. Furthermore, no donations were made to parties or politicians. As a rule, no political statements are made and no political lobbying is carried out. This is ensured globally as part of the annual audit of the Code of Conduct.