Jakarta, 29 July 2020 – In the TOP CSR Awards 2020 event held by Top Business magazine, Sinar Mas Agribusiness and Food managed to bring home two awards – TOP CSR Awards 2020 #Star 5 and TOP Leader on CSR Commitment 2020. The Company was deemed successful in running its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) programmes consistently for years in keeping with its sustainability policy, the GAR Social and Environment Policy (GSEP). One of the highlights from the evaluation criteria used in selecting the winner was the Company’s ability in aligning its business strategy with CSR activities. Among such aligned CSR programmes was forest and land fire prevention measures through the its Desa Makmur Peduli Api (DMPA) programme.
The criteria for granting TOP CSR Awards 2020 include three key aspects, i.e. compliance with ISO 26000 regarding social responsibility, Good Corporate Governance (GCG) as well as the CSR programme’s conformity to a company’s business strategy and competitiveness. The CSR evaluation involved not only CSR experts, but also business experts, consultants and associations, including those from the stock exchange and financial institutions. TOP CSR Awards also promotes GCG implementation since an effective, transparent and accountable CSR programme can only be conducted with good corporate governance.
One of the programmes which goes in line with Sinar Mas Agribusiness and Food’s business strategy is DMPA which to date, engages with 32 villages in Sumatra and Kalimantan. DMPA focuses on three main aspects – fire prevention and suppression, food security, and conservation. The programme has been effective in reducing the number of fire spots in the Company’s operational areas, including that of the communities around its plantations, while advancing the surrounding communities’ well-being. “Especially during the current COVID-19 pandemic crisis and dry season, the Company believes that land and forest fire prevention measures will only be effective when local communities’ basic food and economic needs are met,” stated Managing Director for Sustainability and Strategic Stakeholder Engagement, Agus Purnomo.
Particularly with regard to food security, the Company’s experts help village communities by teaching them how to practice green agriculture. For example, communities in several villages are taught how to grow vegetables, such as water spinach, spinach, chilli, mung bean, breed livestock, and cultivate fish. The yields from crop and livestock can be used for consumption, through communities can save up to IDR 300,000/month in expenses per household. Remaining crops can be sold to earn a monthly additional income of up to IDR 500,000 per household. It builds the communities’ expertise in farming, while improving their own well-being. This programme has brought multiple benefits since 2017, to more than 4,000 beneficiaries.
Besides economic and community development, the Company also focuses on health and education. It operates more than 140 clinics throughout Indonesia, mostly in rural areas. As many as 8,600 beneficiaries have enjoyed access to facilities for improving children’s health, vaccine and nutrition. In education, the Company has 2,160 highly dedicated teachers working in remote areas with various training programmes and courses. There are more than 40,800 students attending 280 schools that are located around the Company’s operations. The Company makes such efforts because it believes that proper education facilities will help prepare the next generations for a better future, away from the poverty.
Winning TOP CSR Awards 2020 not only attests to Sinar Mas Agribusiness and Food’s sustainable and responsible palm oil production, it also motivates the Company to continue efforts in improving its surrounding communities’ well-being. “The impacts of Sinar Mas Agribusiness and Food’s CSR programme, include the declining number of forest, plantation and land fires and improvement of communities’ knowledge in utilising organic matter as replacement of chemical substances, have been significant and positive,” Agus Purnomo concluded.