CSR at ESL Education, An International Education Adventure
International Education is about bringing people together across borders to share knowledge and valuable life experiences. But what’s more valuable than making a connection in a respectful and understanding setting? How do we create an environment where we care for each other, our communities and our environment?
Well, these were the questions which motivated us at ESL Education to create and develop a Corporate Social Responsibility strategy within the framework of Sustainable Development. Our primary objective: to promote, serve and work for a Sustainable International Education industry.
Thus, in 2011 we started to multiply our efforts with many of our partner schools that are Sustainable-Development conscious. We aimed for continuous improvement in areas such as consumption of materials/resources in our schools and offices, to support sustainability projects in our communities and to incorporate sustainable development into syllabuses.
Since 2011 one of our key partners in those initiatives has been International House Belfast.
The CSR Contest: A Great opportunity to do something great
If you are reading this on the EcoApp, let me tell you where the idea originated. Maybe, like me, you are in a hurry to jump to the activities section, so I promise not to keep you for long.
EcoApp is a product of passion. A passion shared by three organisations and a Colombian girl named Martha Liliana Marin.
During an annual meeting between regional ESL managers, it was agreed with IH Belfast Direct Paul McMullan that we would run a contest for young people. Furthermore, we wanted to inspire young Colombians to put forward extra-curricular ideas linked with Sustainable development. Supported by a dear friend, César López director of El Clavo Communications, we were able to televise and digitise our message, therefore, reaching a greater audience. The Cali based company were a great help in our endeavour to unearth a winner.
The contests structure was practical and straightforward; each candidate had to submit a 90-second video of their idea. Firstly, the criteria demanded videos were innovative, inexpensive and community orientated. The winning candidate would win a 4-week English language scholarship at IH Belfast. As a result of the publicity, we received more than 70 videos and chose Martha and her EcoApp idea.
So, this is how the app that you are holding in your hands at this very moment, was formed. I hope I have not bored you with my tale…
Remember that making the world a better place to live is like completing a huge puzzle. A puzzle where the pieces are our little actions and positive mental attitudes, where will your piece fit?
ESL Latin America Area Manager