Inspiring World 

2017 was the third and final year of our Inspiring Women campaign, which helped raise funds for 70 organisations working to empower tens of thousands of women around the world. Inspiring Women also achieved employee participation rates of up to 47%, well above typical company engagement programmes. In 2018, the campaign evolved to Inspiring World, which has a broader scope that more closely aligns with our sustainability framework.

Our 2018 performance

Our Inspiring World campaign, launched in 2018, is now the central tool for involving C&A employees in sustainability, providing them with a different type of employee engagement. Inspiring World encourages employees to share their stories of a better world and participate in contributions to charities that benefit communities around the globe. The overall objective is to build C&A employees’ capacity to support our 2020 sustainability goals by engaging them over three years on campaigns aligned with our strategy: Sustainable Lives, Sustainable Products, and Sustainable Supply.

Carefully designed with the input of employees themselves, Inspiring World strives to help C&A employees feel proud of our company, values, and efforts to make the world a better and more sustainable place. Over time, the impact of the Inspiring World campaign will be twofold:

  • More engaged C&A employees who value sustainability
  • Fundraising for charities that work to create a lasting environmental impact, as well as strengthened communities

During the year, 65% of all employees participated in the campaign, 18% more than had participated in the 2017 campaign. Accordingly, donations to charities increased significantly, from €573,940 in 2017 to €1,001,150 in 2018.

Case study: Dreaming of a better world and raising €1 million for charity

In 2018 — the campaign’s very first year — we called on C&A employees to think of how they can make fashion with a positive impact by answering the question: ‘What’s your dream of a better world for everyone’? Representing 27 locations in 21 countries across all four regions, more than 32,600 C&A employees dreamed together in answering the question.

Employees replied by submitting photos, videos, or written answers, any of which allowed them to vote for one global charity and two local charities to receive funding from C&A Foundation. This enabled employees to contribute to localised action as well as a larger, global purpose. All charities included in the poll have a positive environmental impact or strengthen communities by improving the lives of people working in the local textile industry.

First-year results were impressive:
 

  • 32,615 people participated (65% of C&A employees), providing input about the topics most important to them, such as peace, equality, and justice.
  • 21 countries and six sourcing hubs participated.
  • Globally, 18 C&A markets achieved over 80% employee participation.
  • Forty-five charities — all selected by employees — shared a collective €1 million in donations from C&A Foundation, benefitting more than 250,000 people —  all selected by employees

 

As part of the initial campaign, C&A employees shared their dreams of….

 

A world where everyone respects diversity and gender. - Brazil

Warmer families, better society, better world. – China

Sustainable and green fashion. – Mexico

Tolerance towards religion and culture. – Germany

A poverty-free world, where everyone will be treated equally. - Sourcing representative, Bangladesh

 

Europe

In Europe, many countries saw 100% employee participation, including Croatia, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Romania, Serbia, and Slovenia, as well as in our sourcing hubs in Turkey, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and India. Overall, C&A Europe supported 39 charities with donations totalling €760,000. 

Employees also donated their time to volunteer as part of the campaign. For example, at two store locations in the Czech Republic, employees supported the Environmental Partnership Foundation, which planted 1918 trees for the 100th anniversary of Czech statehood, by planting their own C&A trees in the shopping centre. In another Czech city, store employees volunteered their time to clean up an illegal dump.
 

China

In China, 97% of C&A employees from retail stores and the head office participated. Together, they generated €41,160 in donations for the China Women’s Development Foundation, which provides women from rural communities with embroidery, tie-dying, and business training to earn a steady income, and the Shanghai United Foundation, which helps rural mothers rise from poverty by training them in the breeding of black pigs.

 

Brazil

In Brazil, more than 10,000C&A employees participated and two Brazilian NGOs benefited: Aliança Empreendedora, which supports low-income entrepreneurs, and Instituto Ecotece, a sustainable fashion organisation. C&A Brazil leaders and campaign ambassadors, who were also Instituto C&A volunteers, played a key role in the results. Manager Juliana Cristina Pedroso de Oliveira, who is a member of Instituto C&A’s Volunteer Programme, celebrated the 94% engagement of her regional team in the campaign.

‘I had the support of a senior manager and all regional managers — all connected with the cause’, explained Juliana. ‘We tracked the status of each store daily in the WhatsApp group with leaders, managers, and supervisors’, she added.

Ana Flávia da Cruz Melo, store leader and volunteer, explained, ‘This is what Inspiring World means for me: to see people helping each other with love, respect, and eyes on the horizon, always wanting to go further. We are a team and I knew that the more posts we did, the more we would be contributing to a larger cause’.

View our Inspiring World videos

Where next?

Further activation of Inspiring World

Going forward, we will continue to increase employees’ awareness of C&A’s commitment to sustainable fashion, encourage them to become sustainability ambassadors, and help them feel proud to work for the company.

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