Fondation Espoir Développement
Beachcomber set up Fondation Espoir Développement (Foundation for Hope and Development, FED) in 1999 to implement the Group’s social development strategies and support our commitment to the surrounding communities of our hotels and the Mauritian population at large.
The aim of FED is to empower vulnerable groups with access to education and development to achieve financial independence and self-sufficiency while also contributing to the development of Mauritius. The Foundation pursues this goal through socio-economic empowerment programmes which are primarily targeted towards:
- Out-of-school youth (Projet Employabilité Jeunes); and
- Small-scale artisans (Beautiful LocalHands).
Various youth support programmes have also been implemented through regional committees.
A Board of Directors composed of Beachcomber officials oversees the activities of FED, which is managed by an Administrator backed by a team of 4 employees in charge of implementing the projects of the Foundation. There are also a number of regional committees run on a volunteer basis since 2003 by Group staff members with an interest in social matters. Having them on board provides a clear understanding of the needs of regions surrounding our hotels. The regional committees work with NGOs, stakeholders, local authorities and other government bodies for the implementation of social projects in their respective regions.
For the period from 1999 through 2015, Beachcomber has contributed total funding worth Rs 150 million to support the activities of FED. The Foundation’s priority areas are:
Education and training;
- Health, including the fight against drug abuse and disability;
- Socio-economic development; and
- Conservation and promotion of the natural and cultural heritage of the country.
FED’s Specific Position in the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Landscape of Mauritius
Beachcomber was among the first companies in Mauritius to set up in 1999 an autonomous entity, FED to implement its CSR policy.
FED broke new ground by making a commitment to the long-term funding of NGOs (over a 3-year period) to help improve the quality of services to their beneficiaries and allow them to offer adequate employment conditions to qualified professionals. FED has also organised ongoing training for NGOs supporting children jointly with UNICEF.
From 2003, FED has increasingly integrated its activities with the hotel operations of Beachcomber. PEJ trainees are thus offered work placement opportunity in our hotels, which are also significant clients for Beautiful LocalHands.
The involvement of our hotels and employees in FED’s regional committees gives us insight into the social issues affecting their regions while maintaining contact with the local associations and authorities. They also provide FED with a better understanding of the needs of the hotels and help the Foundation find ways to contribute to their operations. For instance, contacts made with associations or colleges in the West of Mauritius have facilitated the hiring of apprentices at Paradis/Dinarobin, and the implementation of environmental projects such as the use of recycled glass for water filtration systems. The regional committees in the South-East and
South-West have also assisted with the logistics of the Beachcomber UTRB 2016 trail running event through arranging volunteers to guide runners along the course.