HERSHEY, Pa.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Hershey Company (NYSE:HSY) was recognized as one of America’s most community-minded companies in The Civic 50 survey – the first comprehensive ranking of S&P 500 corporations that best use their time, talent, and resources to improve the quality of life in the communities where they do business. This award comes shortly after Hershey was named to the Dow Jones Sustainability North American Index and moved up 172 spots in Newsweek’s Green Rankings.
“Hershey’s long history of philanthropy began with our founder Milton Hershey, who preferred to take a hands-on approach to solving community challenges, and we will continue to do the same as we expand our work in the cocoa communities of West Africa and the communities where our employees call home.”
The survey was conducted by the National Conference on Citizenship (NCoC) and Points of Light, experts on civic engagement, in partnership with Bloomberg LP. The full Civic 50 ranking is posted at www.businessweek.com/interactive_reports/civic_50_2012.html.
“We are very proud to be included in The Civic 50 and be recognized for our commitment to ‘doing well by doing good,’” said James George, Vice President, Corporate Social Responsibility, The Hershey Company. “Hershey’s long history of philanthropy began with our founder Milton Hershey, who preferred to take a hands-on approach to solving community challenges, and we will continue to do the same as we expand our work in the cocoa communities of West Africa and the communities where our employees call home.”
At the heart of Hershey’s community efforts is the well-being of children, especially those at risk. Hershey has a number of programs and partnerships enabling the company to have a positive impact on society and local communities around the world:
- Cocoa community support: In 2012, Hershey announced a $10 million commitment in West Africa over the next five years to accelerate community programs and in October, Hershey announced that it will source 100% certified cocoa for its global chocolate portfolio by 2020.
- United Way giving: Hershey’s annual United Way Campaign raised a record-breaking $2 million in 2011 thanks to generous employee donations and Hershey’s corporate match. The United Way Campaign contributed to the $9 million of monetary and product donations Hershey made in 2011. Hershey also works directly with United Way Worldwide on a number of grants for community initiatives such as an after-school program for children of migrant workers in Shanghai.
- Employee volunteerism: In 2011, Hershey employees donated 10,000 volunteer hours, many through Hershey’s “Dollars for Doers” program, which supports dedicated employee volunteers with a donation to their charity of choice.
- Youth activity: In 2012, Hershey’s Track & Field Games (HT&FG) celebrated 35 years of encouraging kids ages 9-14 to be active through running, jumping and throwing events at over 1,000 free local, state and provincial track meets. HT&FG is the longest-running youth activity program of its kind in North America with more than 10 million youth participating since its inception.
Companies included in The Civic 50 were evaluated on seven specific metrics: leadership, measurement and strategy, design, employee civic health, community partnerships, cause alignment and transparency. Winning companies employed increasingly sophisticated tools to measure the impact of community engagement and alignment of these programs with their business’ core competencies. More than two-thirds of the top 50 companies say they “frequently” or “always” use the professional skills of their workforce to address social issues and real community challenges. Sixty-six percent of the top 50 say they have “mission-level” alignment with their community partners, meaning they work with them on the highest strategic level, not just on individual programs or events.
“NCoC is proud to be part of The Civic 50 launch,” said Ilir Zherka, Executive Director of NCoC. “The Civic 50 demonstrates that the best companies in America are deeply committed to strengthening their respective communities. Leaders of these companies are aligning the expertise of their companies and people with the needs of their communities, and then measuring the impact of their programs. NCoC hopes The Civic 50 will spur companies throughout our country to do the same.”
“As a company committed to community engagement and improvement, Bloomberg is proud to have partnered with the National Conference on Citizenship and Points of Light on this important ranking,” said Norman Pearlstine, Chairman, Bloomberg Businessweek and Chief Content Officer, Bloomberg LP. “The Civic 50 is a pioneering addition to the Bloomberg Rankings inventory. It features a comprehensive, transparent methodology to identify companies that have taken a leadership role in developing and implementing civic engagement programs. We believe it will raise awareness of the importance of a civic consciousness through the U.S. corporate world.”
“Today, in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, we can see clearly how much corporate America pitches in – with expertise, talent, time and money – to help communities meet critical needs,” said Jackie Norris, executive director of the Points of Light Corporate Institute. “In times of disaster and in relative calm, The Civic 50’s work is transformative, innovative and critically important.”
To learn more about The Hershey Company’s Corporate Social Responsibility efforts please visit: http://www.thehersheycompany.com/social-responsibility.aspx
About The Hershey Company
The Hershey Company (NYSE: HSY) is the largest producer of quality chocolate in North America and a global leader in chocolate and sugar confectionery. Headquartered in Hershey, Pa., The Hershey Company has operations throughout the world and approximately 14,000 employees. With revenues of more than $6 billion, Hershey offers confectionery products under more than 80 brand names, including such iconic brands as Hershey's, Reese's, Hershey's Kisses, Hershey's Bliss, Hershey's Special Dark, Kit Kat, Twizzlers, Jolly Rancher and Ice Breakers. Hershey also offers premium and artisan chocolate products under such brands as Scharffen Berger and Dagoba through the Artisan Confections Company, a wholly owned subsidiary. The company is focused on growing its presence in key international markets such as China and Mexico while continuing to build its competitive advantage in the United States and Canada.
For more than 100 years, The Hershey Company has been a leader in making a positive difference in the communities where its employees live, work and do business. Corporate Social Responsibility is an integral part of the company’s global business strategy, which includes goals and priorities focused on fair and ethical business dealings, environmental stewardship, fostering a desirable workplace for employees, and positively impacting society and local communities. Milton Hershey School, established in 1909 by the company's founder and administered by Hershey Trust Company, provides a quality education, housing, and medical care at no cost to children in social and financial need. Students of Milton Hershey School are direct beneficiaries of The Hershey Company's success.