Caring for the community

Business News Publications is a proactive participant in a community support program with nominated charity organisation House With No Steps (HWNS). The associated benefits of supporting a nominated cause has many benefits and successfully fosters positive relationships between charities and businesses.

COMPETITIVE advantage and increased awareness are some of the key benefits realised by businesses embarking on the socially conscious path of corporate social responsibility (CSR).

CSR can be surprisingly beneficial and easily orchestrated and is no longer reserved for corporate giants with resources available to donate big sums of money. With a win-win outcome in mind, small and medium-sized businesses are being encouraged to consider charities and factoring in CSR to their budgets.

Although most large corporations have been instrumental in making the CSR difference, it is difficult for smaller businesses to grasp the undefined concept of what CSR is. Often associated with the assumption that being socially responsible means handing over big bucks, smaller business’ has traditionally veered clear of the concept.

HWNS is a project of The Wheelchair and Disabled Association of Australia, which was established in 1962 to provide quality support services for people with disabilities. Over the past 40 years, it has developed into an organisation with diversified projects in NSW and Queensland, employing more than 450 supported employees and providing services to more than 1400 people with disabilities.

Gold Coast Business News supports the HWNS organisation through a community-based partnership which provides marketing support.

Editor Jason Oxenbridge says the chance to align with the Burleigh Heads-based charity organisation has widespread benefits.

“Supporting a company like HMNS is not just a smart way to give something back to the community, but there’s a synergy from an HR perspective that allows us to illustrate the work that is being done within the organisation to the business community on the Gold Coast,” he says.

“The work that Tarran Deane and her team do is remarkable, finding jobs for people that might not have otherwise had the opportunity, while gaining independence and broadening their skills while boosting confidence.”

According to HWNS marketing manager Robert McNulty, business partnerships with not-for-profit organisations enhance the well-being of communities and create opportunities that are innovative and mutually satisfying.

“Consider the vision, mission and values of your respective companies,” he says.

“Matching attributes and objective for both enterprises is vital and will provide the greatest satisfaction for your respective team members. It’s important to develop customised partnerships with true involvement and engagement by all parties, rather than settling for an off-the-shelf option. Discover what is unique about your organisations and where you can each add most value.”

Regional general manager for House with No Steps (HWNS) Tarran Deane, says CSR has become an important item on businesses agendas in recent years as employers realise the need to do more to ‘keep their employees happy’. Last year HWNS found jobs for 84 people with complex disabilities.

“Staff retention is the prominent driver here, it is important to be an employer of choice,” says Deane.

“In this competitive market place potential and current staff, customers, stakeholders and local communities expect a genuine commitment from companies to actively add value to the communities in which their business operates. We identified the need for prospective employees with the right employer.”

“We are one of Australia's leading organisations in the rehabilitation field, and we are committed to helping people with abilities. We encourage family involvement by providing information, advice, and a sense of security, so that carers know their loved ones are in good hands.

“Our business ventures include garden care, landscaping and packaging. The garden care service specialises in design, installation and maintenance of commercial landscaping projects.”

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