Thanks a Million!
Munich, Mar 30, 2015
The WACKER Relief Fund has reached a milestone: the one millionth euro has been donated to the charitable organization’s account. The primary force behind this impressive figure has been employee donations, which the company has always matched.
A very happy result just one decade after a very sad day – as of the end of the reporting period on December 31, 2014, a total of precisely €1,000,161 had been donated to the WACKER Relief Fund over the past ten years.
Ten years ago – December 2004 – was when the terrible tsunami in Asia laid waste to vast stretches of land. The devastating natural disaster had catastrophic consequences for the people in the affected regions, with thousands losing their lives or livelihoods. WACKER employees spontaneously donated €100,000, a sum that the WACKER Group matched and then augmented by an additional €50,000. Together, this made a total of €250,000 available that could be used for aid projects quickly and with no red tape. This was also when the WACKER Relief Fund was established.
True to the principle of “helping people help themselves,” the WACKER Relief Fund has been supporting programs since 2005 that give victims of natural disasters the chance of a better life. The WACKER Relief Fund is setting a precedent not only in Sri Lanka, but also in China, Haiti and Pakistan, since the foundation focuses on education for children and young people in the aftermath of natural catastrophes.
A few years later, a new approach was taken to securing a sustainable future for these aid projects: in 2012, the Relief Fund asked employees to donate the cent amounts on their monthly paychecks to the fund on a regular basis. Over 4,300 employees in Germany have responded to the call and are helping sustain relief fund projects centered on reconstructing and running schools and training facilities. The WACKER Group is participating in the cent-donation program with a contribution that matches employee donations.
With minimal amounts, every employee in Germany can contribute to ensuring that the fund can offer its partners long-term support. In this program, employees agree to have the amount on their monthly paychecks rounded down to the nearest euro, with the resulting change sent directly to the WACKER Relief Fund. In other words, each employee donates a maximum of 99 cents each month. Taken together with matching contributions from WACKER, the program currently generates a monthly total of over €4,200, which translates to over €50,000 annually. This amount allows the WACKER Relief Fund to provide sustainable, reliable aid.
“On behalf of the WACKER Relief Fund, we would like to thank everyone – WACKER and its employees – for this uncomplicated, sustainable assistance,” stressed Mirko Kappelhoff, the chairman of the Fund’s board of directors. The primary use of the proceeds from the cent-donation program is to ensure uninterrupted operation of an entire school in Kosgoda, which was hit particularly hard by the 2004 tsunami. Far from forgetting the children there, the WACKER Relief Fund and its supporters continue to further their education and future – and provide a hot lunch every day – a decade after the natural disaster.