People having skills and knowledge in philanthropic initiatives are obviously in demand as Indiana University is launching the nation’s first School of Philanthropy. The school is already offering degrees in philanthropic studies for both undergraduates and graduates through the School of Liberal Arts. The students learn about non-profit management, human motivations of financial donors, creating programs that create social change and history of philanthropy.
While they may not have the resources to provide millions of dollars in donated time, small businesses can play an important role in pro boon work and corporate social responsibilities, especially since firms with less than 20 employees make up 89 percent of US employers. They can use their experiences in wearing multiple hats by helping nonprofits develop new strategies and organization design. Sometimes even a few hours of assistance in marketing, technology and operations can truly go in a long way. Read more about how small business can help nonprofit.
Social good is truly a viral and contagious activity. When one does something kind for another person, the person who received assistant will offer help to another person and the cycle repeats. Even if one person who doesn’t receive assistance, sees someone else taking a random act of kindness, that person will still often take action to help another. An article lists examples of how some random act of kindness can grow exponentially.
Microsoft has a very extensive corporate social responsibility program, as their report is 80 pages long and they have a wide range of commitments. Microsoft has a mission “To help people and businesses around the world realize their full potential.” The company has been working with partners to use their technology to solve a range of social issues. They work with public and private sectors to find ways technology can help solve some of the challenges in today’s society. They help strengthen local economies by supporting IT infrastructure, workforce development, innovation, research, and access to technology. They provide affordable and accessible technology for “those at the bottom and middle of the economic pyramid.”
Microsoft has been known for improving the quality of education around the world by using their skills to serve local needs. The company is helping overcome the global shortage of well-trained teachers and provide students the skills in critical science technology, technology, engineering, and math. In order to meet the needs, the company is using the internet to provide greater access to better education opportunities and providing technology tools for teachers to use in their curriculum. Microsoft set a gaol in 2003 to reach 250 million students and teachers in 115 countries or regions through Partners in Learning by 2013 and they are certainly on track to reach the goal. So far, since 2003, they have reached almost 2010 million students and teachers in 120 countries.
The company helps thousands of nonprofits obtain greater access to technologies to achieve their missions. In the past year, Microsoft donated more than $844 million in software to nonprofits in 113 countries and regions. Since 1998, the company has donated more than $3.9 billion in software. Microsoft offers many ways to train people to use the technology, which includes hosting more than 100 NCO Connection Days, holding webinars, and working with Nonprofit Technology Network (NTEN) to train 100 nonprofit leaders to manage information technology.
As the company saw the challenges of handling natural disasters, as workers lack in technology skills to find and keep employment and people struggle in dealing with communication, Microsoft has achieved their goal in developing and implementing cloud solutions to assist disaster response while also helping businesses recover more quickly. The cloud solutions has already been used in Japan’s natural disaster in 2011. As the company continues to meet the needs of disaster relief, they are also partnering with relief agencies and government and utilizing social media to bring in global donations and awareness.
Microsoft is taking an initiative to use gaming as a teaching tool. In the past year, the company launched Kinect for Xbox360. Teachers around the world are using Kinect to assist in stimulating students’ language literacy, numeracy development, and physical fitness. “One school principal in South Africa observed that students focus so intensely on the games that they overcome their inhibitions and learn more easily.
These are just the glimpses of Microsoft’s amazing corporate social responsibility program. You can read more about their corporate social responsibility by clicking here.