Thriving communities

Our business will not be successful unless the communities we operate in also flourish and thrive. We’re supporting our employees to contribute to the economic and social development of their local areas, by sharing skills, offering time, and fundraising for local causes.

The challenge

More than a decade on from the global financial crisis, many communities are still feeling the effects of the economic downturn. Unemployment levels are high in many of our operating regions, with more than one in four working age adults in Europe classified as economically inactive. The challenge is particularly acute among young people in the markets we work in.

Thriving communities in action

See all the ways that we contributed to thriving local communities in 2017

Our approach

We aim to help our communities thrive by using three main levers: supporting education and employability, working with enterprise and social entrepreneurs, and facilitating our employees to support local causes that they are passionate about.

Through our education and employability programmes, we encourage employees to share their experience with young people to help them develop the skills and confidence required for the workplace.

We support enterprise and entrepreneurship by working with social entrepreneurs who are tackling specific social or environmental issues in their communities. We do this in partnership with the School for Social Entrepreneurs by providing skilled guidance, mentorship and training to leaders of social businesses in the UK and Canada.

Finally, we encourage our employees to support causes they feel passionately about. We’re proud that our employees are motivated to give time and energy to charitable causes.


Annual community investment

   2017 2016  2015
Payments to charities £1,423,400  £1,315,900 £1,282,300
Employee raised  £265,900 £153,800 £222,800
Volunteering value  £197,500 £141,700 £156,70 
Gifts in kind  £6,800 £105,900 0
GROUP TOTAL £1,893,600 £1,717,300 £1,661,800

Our partnership with School for Social Entrepreneurs

We have been working closely with School for Social Entrepreneurs (SSE) for the last five years; and our long-term relationship has been an integral part of delivering our corporate responsibility strategy Making Things Better, Together in both the UK and our Canadian operations.

Through our partnership, we have supported the development of many passionate and driven individuals who tackle pressing social and environmental challenges head on. SSE’s programme of activities enables entrepreneurs to hone the skills all leaders need – and it’s given our leaders the chance to learn from them too!

We have demonstrated what can be achieved when business and the third sector work together to share skills, expertise and a passion to make a difference. You can read more about our partnership in our new impact report ‘celebrating five years of creating social impact’.

RSA and SSE partnership impact report

Creating social impacts through entrepreneurial spirit