From Corporate Philanthropy to CSR

Lebanon’s 1st IEMA Certified Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Practitioner Training

Under the patronage of the Ministry of Economy and Trade,for the first time inLebanon,IEMA Certified Sustainability (CSR) Practitioner Training–18th& 19thof June in ECOSOC the Economic and Social Council. This workshop was under the patronage of the Ministry of Economy and Trade with a special intervention of Mr. Marcello Mori, Head of the Sustainable Development section of the EU Delegation to Lebanon, representingH.E.Ambassador Angelina Eichhorst, Head of Delegation of the European Union to Lebanon. In the presence ofgovernment and civil society representatives, sustainability – Corporate Social Responsibilityexperts from private sector as: Abbvie (Abbott), CCC (Consolidated Contractors Company), Majid Al Futtaim, Medtronic, Blom Bank, Credit Bank, and others.

The workshop was launched by Mr. Samir Naimeh, Director of the President’s Cabinet of ECOSOC, representing Mr. Roger Nasnas, President of ECOSOC and Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of AXA Middle East;in his speech, he focused on the importance of choosing the ECOSOC as a venue for this event, as it shows its involvement in social reformand its role in the Dialogue between the economy and society highlighted by the European Union in supporting public and private sectorinitiatives and CSR – Corporate Social Responsibility - role.

Patricia Bitar Cherfan, chairman of Pidraya and Social Entrepreneur talked about how “Corporate social responsibility –CSR– is not about hoping that things won’t get too much worse, it is about sustainability leadership, it is about being passionate about positive change. Pidraya wants to exercise corporate activism, hand in hand with other sustainability influences in the Country, hand in hand with government and civil society.’

As for Nikos Avlonas, Founder and President of CSE, the Center for Sustainability and Excellence, he insisted on “the need for defining CSR appropriately and measuring its impact”.

Mr. Marcello Mori, Head of the Sustainable Development section of the EU Delegation to Lebanon, representingH.E. Ambassador Angelina Eichhorst, Head of Delegation of the European Union to Lebanon, stated that: “In countries where the emergence of the State of Law proves to be difficult, where existing States have difficulties to enforce the Law, a particularly strong commitment is requested from enterprises to pave the way forlong term social and political stability, which is so crucial for the enterprises themselves. They have focused public attention on the social and ethical performance of enterprises. By renewing efforts to promote CSR, the Commission aimed to create conditions favourable to sustainable growth, responsible business behaviour and durable employment generation in the medium and long term. The Commission has played a pioneering role in the development of public policy to promote CSR ever since its 2001 Green Paper and the establishment of the European Multistakeholder Forum on CSR”. He also stated the following: “The number of EU enterprises that have signed up to the ten CSR principles of the United Nations Global Compact has risen from 600 in 2006 to over 1900 in 2011. The number of organisations with sites registered under the Environmental Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS) has risen from 3,300 in 2006 to over 4,600 in 2011.”

The EU considers that consumers and investors are in a position to enhance market reward for socially responsible companies through the consumption and investment decisions they take. I have no doubt that Lebanese consumers and investors have the same power, especially in a country where media freedom allows them to play a key role in raising awareness about both the positive and negative impacts of enterprises.

Mrs. Rafif Berro, representing H.E. Dr Alain Hakim, Minister of Economy and Trade had the last word and said: “I hereby relay his Excellency’s support to the initiative undertaken by Pidraya on the subject of this training the Corporate Social Responsibility”.



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PIDRAYA-CSE Sustainability Training

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