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Insights and Stories

Giving Back to Our Communities

October 10, 2022

Sustainability is our business, and we put that into practice by walking the talk.

Every year, through Sembcorp Gives Back Week (SGBW), our employees from around the world come together to participate in various volunteering activities to engage and contribute to our communities. Themed around "Path to Green", this year’s SGBW saw more than 1,000 participants across nine countries, with over 40 different kinds of activities ranging from beach cleanups, tree planting, educational outreach programmes to upcycling and donation drives.

Keeping our coastlines and shores clean

In Singapore, our team at Sembcorp Gas has a tradition of doing bi-monthly shoreline cleanups. This year, they invited colleagues from other plants to join them in this activity; more than 60 kilograms of trash were collected in just a span of a few hours!

“The shore cleanup was a tiring but fulfilling event. Even though we cleaned up the shore a few times in the past months, the trash always seems to continuously pile up as a result of people not disposing their trash properly. This makes me more cautious about how I dispose of my own trash now,” shared Amelia Twan, Operations Engineer, Sembcorp Gas & Service Corridor.

Our Singapore colleagues at the shoreline cleanup in Jurong Island
Our Singapore colleagues at the shoreline cleanup in Jurong Island

Inculcating sustainability awareness amongst students

In China, our colleagues participated in educational outreach programmes to teach students about climate change and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). More than 25 students participated in the sessions.

“During the activity, I felt as if I had become a student again. Environmental protection is an urgent imperative for us – we need to change our way of thinking and protect our planet starting from our everyday actions,” shared Xu Wei Jie, HR & Admin Executive, Sembcorp Water Tech (Nanjing) Co. Ltd.

Our China colleagues conducting climate change and STEM workshops for the students
Our China colleagues conducting climate change and STEM workshops for the students

Gardening and keeping our community spaces clean

In the UK, our team enjoyed volunteering with the Gisborough Priory Project, Friends of Redcar Cemetery and Love Solihull with gardening projects and litter picking.

“Friends of Redcar Cemetery is such a worthy charity, especially when you understand how they help people and the environment. By opening our minds to different charities, this really made me think more about the work that the volunteers do, and the impact on how it helps mental health in others, which is what we are passionate about in our business,” shared Joanne Potter, Head of HR at Sembcorp Energy UK.

“I’ve always enjoyed urban green spaces and, during lockdown, parks became an essential part of keeping a well-balanced lifestyle. Litter picking was a way to show my appreciation for the park and to help others enjoy it. Through SGBW, we are reminded that we as a business sit in a wider community,” added Grace March, Regulatory Affairs Manager at Sembcorp Energy UK.

Our UK colleagues helping out gardening and litter picking
Our UK colleagues helping out gardening and litter picking

Planting trees across the globe

To reduce climate change and enrich the communities, we also conducted various tree-planting activities across the countries we operate in. “Someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago – this motto has always been stuck with me and I believe that tree planting is a good way to mitigate the effect of global warming. Besides purifying the air and cooling the streets, we also help to provide shelter and boost biodiversity,” shared Saleem Ahmed, Sembcorp UAE.

Our colleagues planting trees in UAE and India
Our colleagues planting trees in UAE and India

Embarking on the decarbonisation journey as One Sembcorp

Besides volunteering and taking part in community initiatives, we challenged our employees to embark on a journey to reduce our carbon footprint through lifestyle changes. More than 250 of us, joined by our family and friends, participated by going meatless, taking public transport, upcycling and recycling plastics or electronic waste throughout the week.

“SGBW gives us an opportunity to encourage the habit of recycling and donating old and unused items to those who need them more. We are also reducing waste by extending the lifespan of these items,” shared Doris Lim, Sembcorp Development.

Our Singapore and Vietnam colleagues sorting out items at the donation drives
Our Singapore and Vietnam colleagues sorting out items at the donation drives

Sembcorp Gives Back Week is an example of how every small action counts when it comes to contributing towards a greener future. We are heartened to see everyone coming together to do our part for the environment. To find out what our colleagues from Bangladesh, Oman, UAE and Vietnam were up to, watch the video below for the full highlights of the week!