Promoting Corporate Social Responsibility in Georgia
ACCESS local implementing partner, Civil Development Agency (CiDA), has been working for more than two years to facilitate cooperation between Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and businesses as well as to promote corporate social responsibility practices in Georgia. With this in mind, CiDA, with support from EWMI ACCESS, established the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Club in 2015, which unites 80 CSOs, businesses and education institutions and aims to foster cooperation between these sectors. In addition, last year CiDA became the secretariat of the UN Global Compact Network (UNGC) and the official representative of the Network in Georgia. The Network aims to establish principles of human rights, labor, environmental-protection, and anti-corruption in the business sector and encourages businesses to take actions to advance societal goals. For this purpose, ACCESS supports CiDA in facilitating cooperation between the CSO sector and businesses for implementing social initiatives, and capacity building for business companies in order to adhere to UNGC standards.
In August, CiDA, as part of its support for the UNGC, organized trainings on Women Empowerment Principles (WEP) for five business members of the Georgian Network. The trainings, delivered by the CSO “Sapari”, provided practical guidance to the participating businesses on how to empower their female employees and promote gender equality inside their companies, as well as in external relations. In particular, the first training covered topics related to gender stereotypes, and direct and indirect discrimination at the workplace. The second training focused specifically on existing gender stereotypes in PR and marketing practices in Georgia, as well as worldwide, and discussed ways of avoiding similar practices. Prior to the training, CiDA helped the companies to assess their internal operational systems from a gender perspective, and assisted them in developing and introducing WEP action plans.