At Ready Scotland, we believe that supporting your community, local charities and social enterprises isn’t just the right to do, it’s also a better way of doing business that helps you to build stronger social connections with the community you serve.
If you’ve taken some of the practical steps outlined on the Business Continuity pages, you’ll be in a strong position to provide services to your local community at a time they’re really needed. When major disruptions occur, as well as maintaining your operations, you may be able to help your local emergency services and community groups.
Consider Your Assets
- What assets do you have that could safely and sustainably be used to support your community? Could you donate products or services to people who are experiencing difficulties or have been impacted by an emergency? Could your staff’s time or expertise be used or perhaps you have vehicles that could be loaned to transport people or goods?
Encourage Staff Volunteering
- The people who make up your business are its most valuable asset. Do any of your staff members already volunteer or support the community? How could you help this to happen? E.g. offering paid hours or days to do voluntary work. Volunteer Scotland has more information.
Building Community Connections
- A vital step in responding to big challenges is through connecting with the community you want to support e.g. through community councils, business networks or local schools. You should also get in touch with your local authority, through the emergency planning team or business support services, and ask how they would bring local businesses together to support the community during emergency situations. If this doesn’t exist, advocate for it!
Businesses can play an important role in supporting people through humanitarian crises. This could be through offering your expertise, funding to support a project, providing premises, or other specialist goods.
Financial donations are often more effective than in-kind donations, but the key is to build connections with national humanitarian organisations or local refugee charities, and explore with them how your business could support if needed.