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Hyatt Hotels check out community engagement

July 2013

Global hospitality company Hyatt Hotels Corporation recently unveiled a new social pledge campaign called Commit To Thrive, which asked employees, guests, and local residents to take an online pledge to commit to making a positive difference in their communities. For each pledge taken - up to 35,000 - Hyatt donated a book to a child in need through Room to Read and We Give Books.

Pro-active approach
Indeed, the group prides itself on its pro-active approach to community engagement. Now in its third year, the Hyatt Thrive Global Month of Community Service focuses on volunteerism “to make local communities places where Hyatt associates are proud to work, where guests want to visit, where neighbours want to live, and where hotel owners want to invest”. Hyatt Thrive, the company’s corporate responsibility platform, is based on four key pillars: environmental sustainability, economic development and investment, education and personal advancement, and health and wellness.

As a part of the Hyatt Thrive Global Month of Community Service this year, Hyatt worked with coffee chain giant Starbucks, where they collaborated on a day of service in Hyatt’s hometown of Chicago. Hyatt staff and guests, along with Starbucks employees, customers, and Chicago community members, volunteered in Chicago’s Englewood and New City communities on Chicago’s South side.

In addition to working with Starbucks, Hyatt hotels recently began working with Clean the World, a non-profit organisation that collects recycled soap and shampoo products discarded by the hospitality industry and donates them to impoverished people around the world. Through the distribution and donation of these products, Clean the World helps to prevent millions of deaths caused by hygiene-related illnesses every year.

There are currently 20 Hyatt properties around the world that work with Clean the World that have collectively donated more than 19 tons of soaps and amenities to date. To kick off the newly formed relationship, Hyatt Hotels & Resorts donated amenities worth $15,000 and will also encourage employees to get involved and help give back to the communities they call home.

Global initiatives
Community-oriented programmes take place around the world. In London earlier this year the hotel chain’s Andaz Liverpool Street employees cooked and served breakfast to homeless charity, Providence Row, clients and also painted and refurbished the organisation’s reception area.

In Shanghai, a dedicated team of volunteers from Grand Hyatt Shanghai, Hyatt on the Bund, Park Hyatt Shanghai, and Andaz Shanghai made a special visit to the Shanghai Social Welfare Institute where they organised interactive games, as well as song and dance performances for more than 150 children and seniors in need.

And in India staff of the Grand Hyatt Mumbai and Hyatt Regency Mumbai joined together to address education and personal advancement, health and wellness, and environmental sustainability in Mumbai. The hotels worked directly with Aseema, a charitable organisation providing underprivileged children with educational opportunities. Staff dedicated a day to volunteering at Aseema, providing children with fun, engaging and educational-based activities.

Local relevance
Additionally, in support of Mumbai’s Mahatma Gandhi blood bank, both hotels conducted a blood donation drive to help fight Thalassemia, a well-known red blood cell disease affecting India’s youth. Lastly, in support of environmental sustainability and Earth Day, both Grand Hyatt Mumbai and Hyatt Regency Mumbai launched a “Plant a Sapling” initiative, which encourages employees to plant saplings in and around their communities.

 

Comment from Insitute of Business Ethics

Hyatt Hotels Corporation clearly understands the business benefit of engaging staff in its commitment to being a socially responsible business. This should help embed their four pillars of their platform into all aspects of business behaviour.

Of note in this case:
• its success in harnessing, through their place of work, employees’ motivation to contribute to their wider communities
• the local nature and diversity of the projects
• that the company has also drawn customers and local residents into their pledge so that the influence of the project is widened most effectively.

Dr Nicole Dando
Head of Projects  




Hyatt | Global | Volunteering

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