[Sponsored Report] GS Caltex gives back to community

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[Sponsored Report] GS Caltex gives back to community


GS Caltex employees pose in front of goods donated to the WeAJa charity flea market at GS Caltex headquarters in Yeoksam-dong, southern Seoul.

Under the slogan “Beautiful World Through Energy Sharing,” GS Caltex is organizing public service projects with two themes: “Green Sharing” and “Community Involvement.”

The company’s partnership with the JoongAng Ilbo plays a part in its efforts as it has participated in the WeAJa charity flea market since 2005. On Oct. 14, GS Caltex employees and their families participated in this year’s event at the World Cup Stadium in western Seoul. Together, they sold a variety of different products and donated the profits to good causes. Employees of the sponsoring companies donate slightly used goods, and celebrities donate some items as well. Funds that are raised benefit children from low-income families.

In addition to helping needy people domestically, GS Caltex employees are working to provide assistance to our neighbors in the third world. So-called “environment refugees,” or those who are facing difficulties because of climate change or lack of energy, are the focus of the “Green Sharing” project.

In 2011, the company sent a volunteer group of employees and local teenagers to northern Cambodia to work on quality of life improvement projects such as safe drinking water systems, road improvement and conservation, and day care centers and playgrounds.

In August, the company focused on sustainable energy development and supply in underdeveloped countries under its “Global Energy Plus” theme. For this second trip, GS Caltex sent a group of employees and children from a local welfare center to Cambodia. These volunteers worked to construct a solar energy technology center and also to operate a solar energy charging facility. Together, they also worked to provide education about solar energy and product distribution. Thanks to personal donations made by employees and a matching grant provided by the company, GS Caltex was able to purchase 560 solar energy lamps for homes in Cambodia.

To emphasize its focus on families and children, GS Caltex is also currently managing the “Make a Wish Come True” relay, which is held at the end of every year. The event was originally conceived to give hope to neglected members of our society.

This volunteer activity, started in 2005, is different from other companies’ social contribution projects. Unlike other, more standard manifestations of social responsibility, GS Caltex matches donations made by employees and enables families to directly participate in making the wishes of underprivileged people come true.

Recently, GS Caltex employees delivered homemade kimchi and cake to senior citizens who live alone through the “Make a Wish Come True” event. They also delivered heating oil so that low-income people can have warm winters despite the cold weather.

Additionally, GS Caltex has hosted the GS Caltex Green Environment Drawing Contest and Green Children Writing Contest in May of each year since 1994 so that our children - society’s future leaders - will learn the importance and meaning of environment preservation from an early age.

The 19th Green Environment Drawing Contest was held this year with various activities so children and their families could experience green energy themselves and share the value of the environment together. This contest has become one of the largest youth environment events in Korea.

Besides these contests, the company also operates various educational programs that teach the seriousness of climate change and proper ways to use energy. There is also a national park ecological experience program for neglected children and those with environment-related diseases.

The company also completed Yeulmaru, a cultural art park in Yeosu, in May to help Yeosu citizens enjoy culture more easily and to achieve harmonious development in local society.

In 2007, it signed an agreement with Yeosu City and later started work on the 110 billion won ($100 million) project.

Yeulmaru is meant to be a comfortable place to rest with traditional houses and a sea of cultural art. Yeulmaru is constructed on a 700,000 -square-meter (173-acre) site that includes a 1,000-seat main theater and 300-seat small theater along with an exhibition hall, atelier, ancient garden and shore pedestrian walk. Thanks to close cooperation with Yeosu City, the project has been acknowledged a model case of win-win collaboration between local society and a large company.

Through all of these efforts, GS Caltex has been working hard to return its profits to the local communities it has served for the past 45 years, and it will continue to do so in the future.

By Lee Ji-hyun [concordia@joongang.co.kr]
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