When it comes to corporate social responsibility, it is important to understand the tremendous value it brings to not only the charitable organization but also the company’s long-term sustainable growth. Extending beyond a day of giving or a single donation, CSR today is more about the continued support, year after year, that helps create a better future for societies in which we travel to, work and reside. Marinas play a very unique role in communities. They are, at least in part, open to the public, and in highly transient locations – entry points for tourists. Primary goals for IGY are to ensure that the community welcomes these tourists and understands the yachting/boating culture; and that tourists develop ties to and respect for adjacent communities.
For IGY Marinas, we have always looked for ways to support the local communities in which we have a company presence. In 2016, we decided to implement a more structured approach and launch of our philanthropic arm Inspire Giving through You. Our team found key learnings from the past year through this initiative that serve to be valuable in our industry today. This new platform allows us to bring multiple participants to our efforts, better coordinate our efforts and gain better exposure for the charities and entities we are seeking to support.
It is amazing to see the evolution of our multi-billion dollar industry today. What is even more amazing to see is profitable companies joining forces to support organizations within our network and beyond. While one person can make a difference, our long-term goal is to team up with other marinas and industry stakeholders in each of our destinations and beyond – a call to service. This is when strength in numbers comes into play, as we all call upon our employees, partners, guests and more to come together to give back on a global scale.
As an international company – often operating in developing countries – IGY places a major focus on supporting the overall appeal of a destination. Through philanthropic projects, we not only bring attention to our industry, but also the strengths of each of our host locations. Getting the community excited about improving their country not only benefits the non-profits, but also the destination as a whole. This ultimately improves the quality of life in the region, bringing more travelers to the area, more “voluntourism” and more economic impact.
Community outreach events are a great place to build upon new and existing relationships with employees, stakeholders, clients and more. The relaxed environment lends itself to bring different groups together and create a strong, common bond. Your rapport becomes personal, creating memories that will ultimately extend beyond the initiative and into friendships, future business ventures and increased company morale. All parties working together as a single unit develops a sense of pride and loyalty to a brand, which generates revenue growth and allows the company to continue supporting societies on a local, regional and global scale.
Tom Mukamal serves as CEO of IGY Marinas. For more information on IGY Marinas or its collection of marina destinations, visit www.IGYMarinas.com.