At Brown and Company PLC, Corporate Social Responsibility means building a sustainable business that reflects the values that it holds important. This includes the commitment to support the broader community it lives and works in.
Investing in the Future
Education and development of the arts have been identified as two of the main platforms on which the Browns group will base its social responsibility activities over the next two years. In the year under review, the Group sponsored the ‘Nawa Kalakaruwo’ visual arts exhibition organised by The George Keyt Foundation in an attempt to give exposure to young and emerging artists. Over 40 artists participated in the event, which was highly successful.
Every year the Company also supports the children of staff members who excel at the Grade Five Scholarship examination, as well as the Ordinary Level and Advanced Level examinations, with scholarships so that they may pursue higher studies. The group also supports students from around the country with internship opportunities and possible employment based on their performance and skills.
The Company has also finalised a structured format of CSR projects to uplift the standard of rural children by providing them with IT education which will be a key conduit to make them active participants in the global village. IT will be a crucial skill that our children will need to have & the Company has identified a number of key schools in high poverty districts to start this programme in the coming financial year.
Public Service Initiatives
In addition to the area of arts and education, the different divisions of the Browns Group carry out other community service initiatives, even providing customers and the general public with value added services at no additional cost. Several training and information workshops were conducted by the different divisions of Browns. For example, workshops were conducted for farmers and fishermen on the proper use of related machinery and equipment. These workshops were not limited to customers of Browns but to all who were interested and were free of charge. The Agriculture division conducted 25 such workshops during the year. Free service camps were held for trade associations, chambers of commerce and industrialists. These workshops help promote best practices among different industries. The Battmobile service run by Browns is a mobile battery unit that assists stranded motorists who have urgent trouble with their vehicles and need roadside assistance. There are currently 60 Battmobiles in operation and this will be expanded to 75 to meet the needs of people across the country.
Supporting the Environment
Browns supports the preservation of the environment through its Engineering and Environmental Services Division. This division markets eco-friendly waste water disposal and treatment solutions to large manufacturing industries.
The Company also recycles all of its vehicle batteries through a dedicated recycling unit at its Exide manufacturing plant.
Supporting the Community
Browns attempted to meet the specific needs of people in disadvantaged circumstances. During the year, the Company’s Agriculture division made a donation to a rural village in Wasgamuwa to set up an elephant safety fence and also provided a water tank and a deep well to a rural village in Jaffna. Donations of stationary and clothes were made to a children’s orphanage in Minneriya and dry rations were provided to a family in Diyatalawa.
The Company also donated Exide batteries to the Dalada Maligawa to illuminate the elephant tusker carrying the sacred tooth relic at the Kandy Perahera, in the year under review.