Posts within ‘Making Our Difference: TBL CSR’

Timberland PRO’s Virtual Food Drive Helps Give Hunger the Boot

As many as 66,000 people receive emergency food assistance every week through Harvesters – the largest community food bank serving eastern Kansas and western Missouri.  Along with our longstanding partner SkillsUSA, Timberland PRO is proud to support Harvesters and their work through our Virtual Food Drive.  Now through June 28, you can help by clicking through to the food drive and adding much-needed groceries to your virtual cart.  (No lines, no waiting, no grocery store muzak!)

When you donate, you’ll be entered to win a $250 American Express gift card and a free pair of Timberland PRO shoes.  All donations are tax deductible, and Timberland PRO will match donations up to a total of $1,000 or 5,000 meals.

Help us give hunger the boot.  Learn more and make a donation now: timberland.harvesters.org

Calling All Designers: Do You Have an Award-Winning Handbag?

If so, take note:  The HBDNetwork cordially invites you to compete in the 7th Annual Independent Handbag Designer Awards — the only handbag competition of its kind in the world. Submit your handbag and compete for one of nine awards in handbag excellence, international recognition and a variety of fabulous prizes.

As in past years, Timberland is proud to sponsor the Best Green Handbag — awarded to the best handbag made of sustainable, recycled or organic materials and completely recyclable at the end of its life.  As a brand that’s passionate about design and protecting the environment, we’re always excited to see the beautiful green bag submission!

Fiona Kempton's beautiful bag won our "Best Green" award last year.

Other 2013 award categories include Best Student-Made Handbag, Best Handbag in Overall Style and Design and the ever-popular Audience Fan Favorite Handbag.  To see a complete list of award categories, submission requirements and details on what each winner will receive, go to the 2013 IHDA website.  Ready to submit your design?  Enter here!

Looking for inspiration?  Plenty to be found in this video from last year’s IHDA awards in New York City:

Tick tock, designers — the deadline for IHDA submissions is April 27, 2013.

Timberland Helps Haiti Plant 2 Million Trees (and Counting)

Three years after committing to plant 5 million trees in five years, Timberland is proud to share progress of improved environmental, economic and social conditions in the rural region near Gonaives, Haiti.  In partnership with a local non-governmental organization, the Smallholder Farmers Alliance, we support an agroforestry program to train Haitian farmers to improve crop yields – and have planted 2.2 million trees along the way.

In 2010, Timberland teamed up with representatives from the Smallholder Farmers Alliance to create a self-sustaining agroforestry model that would deliver agricultural improvement, environmental restoration and economic growth for participating farmers through the development of eight community tree nurseries and agricultural training centers. This pilot cooperative, which is reliant on private sector, non-profit and community partnership, will plant a million more trees in 2013, 2014 and 2015, for a total of 5 million.

The Smallholder Farmers Alliance engaged a group of 2,000 small-scale farmers in the area near Gonaives and transformed the group into a for-profit agroforestry cooperative.  The farmers volunteer their time to manage the tree nurseries and plant trees in return for agricultural services, including high-yield seed, training in crop management, in-field technical support and the good quality tools needed to produce higher yields of sorghum, beans, corn and other food items. Farmers sell their crops individually, but the cooperative supports them by paying for these continued services with the sale of excess trees from the farmer-run tree nurseries.

After just three years of investment, the cooperative continues as a farmer-managed, self-financed operation. This innovation in “exit strategy aid,” which sets a time limit on external funding, tackles a key challenge faced by corporate organizations when getting involved in sustainability or disaster relief projects on the ground in developing nations.

To learn more about Timberland’s tree planting efforts visit the community section of our website.

Wanted: New Hampshire Earth Day Projects

New Hampshire area readers: Timberland is now accepting proposals for Earth Day service projects for our NH-based employees.  We love our local communities, we love the outdoors, and we’re looking for regreening projects that will allow us to bring those two passions together and make them both better.

In simpler terms, a “regreening project” is creating or improving outdoor spaces so more people can enjoy them.  In past years, we’ve worked on public greenways and trail systems, cleaned up community gardens, playgrounds and parks, and expanded outdoor learning spaces for camps and schools.

To learn more about the kinds of projects we’re looking for and to submit your own idea, click here to download the RFP for Timberland’s 2013 Earth Day projects.  The deadline for submissions is February 1.

Transforming Wasteland to Wonderful Garden in China

Our supplier sustainability team shared the following update from Zhu Hai Lian Feng, a knitwear factory located in Zhuhai, Guangdong, China. Zhu Hai Lian Feng has been a Timberland partner since 2008.

Two years ago, factory management decided to create an eco-garden in the barren land surrounding the factory.  After 6 months of hard work, their vision was realized, and a beautiful, relaxing and bountiful garden was completed.

The Zhu Hai Lian Feng eco-garden is home to many fruits and vegetables, including papaw, dragon fruit, leechee, mangoes, tomatoes and lettuce.  The garden is harvested by factory employees, and the fruits and vegetables go directly to the factory’s canteen.  There’s nothing better than fresh fruits and vegetables grown on site!

Zhu Hai Lian Feng also constructed two pavilions in the eco-garden, which are frequently used by employees for parties, catching up with friends and simply relaxing.

To learn more about Timberland partners like Zhu Hai Lian Feng and how they’re working to improve their workplaces with projects like the eco-garden, please visit our Responsibility website.

Celebrating 20 Years of Service Around the World

Twenty years ago, Timberland created our Path of Service™ program—a monumental moment that marked the beginning of a rich tradition of service.

To celebrate the 20th Anniversary, we put our values into action at events around the world, thanks to our team of Global Stewards—passionate employees who volunteer above and beyond their regular job responsibilities to serve as ambassadors of corporate social responsibility. Here are some highlights of their efforts around the world:

  • Italy: Global Steward Francesca Vitale organized a two-day service trip for three teams of employees to Cinque Terre on Palmaria Island. Each team worked on different projects, including cleaning beaches, renovating benches along the paths, and repainting an old military fortress.
  • Japan: Global Steward Shiho Hirasawa’s team spread its celebration across the year, arranging monthly service events from May through November.
  • Taiwan: With the support of Global Steward Marty Shen, Taiwan launched a program that rewards consumers for engaging with Timberland in service—a concept that’s spread to other Timberland locations around the world.
  • USA: Near our Stratham, New Hampshire global headquarters, community engagement manager Brianne Wood coordinated more than 350 volunteers in this year’s Serv-a-Palooza in three locations. The team helped 25 non-profit organizations by constructing outdoor furniture, creating and restoring over three miles of trails, and knitting winter hats and mittens.

Our commitment to service doesn’t end with our employees. Over the years, our service events have grown to include vendors, distributors, supplier factories and consumers and community members.  We’re also fortunate that our new parent company, VF Corporation, supports Timberland’s values-driven brand and mission to equip people to make a difference in the communities where they live and work. We look forward to continuing to partner with VF to grow our commitment to service beyond our own corporate walls.

What is so powerful about our service program is the many ripples it creates. As we send people to service sites, their direct impact ripples out to other organizations and the people they serve. Our belief is that when each employee has a service experience, it helps them become more engaged in their own community and on their own time. We hope this year’s 20th anniversary has re-energized our army of service warriors to continue to grow Timberland’s level of service.

Making a Difference in Brazil: Alpargatas Institute

Alpargatas S.A. is one of the largest shoe manufacturing companies in Latin America, and has been Timberland’s distributor in Brazil since 1998. The company has 13 factories in Brazil and Argentina, and employs more than 17,000 employees worldwide.

In 2003, Alpargatas founded the Alpargatas Institute with the mission of contributing to the improvement and quality of education for children, teenagers and young people through sports and culture in the communities in which the company operates.

The institute has partnered with the government and local NGOs to develop various programs for students, both during and after school. The institute’s programs focus on education via sport, education through culture, volunteering activities, as well as donations.

The actions of the Alpargatas Institute reflect the strong social concern that is embedded in the DNA of Alpargatas. Sport and culture are directly linked to the promotion of quality of life, welfare, integration, overcoming barriers as well as for the understanding of individuals and teams. Therefore, we believe that by supporting sports, educational and cultural activities Alpargatas is adding elements to the school curriculum of these communities that are part of the everyday life of our business and our way of being and living.

- Alpargatas’ President, Mr. Marcio Utsch

The Alpargatas Institute currently has programs in 13 cities in 4 states, and to date, these programs have benefitted over 348,000 children, helping them to gain a wealth of knowledge, experience, confidence and hope for a better future.  In addition, these programs have helped to contribute to the improvement of the Basic Education Development Index – an indicator created by Brazilian Federal Government to evaluate the quality of education in the country – in the cities in where it operates.

We are proud of the positive impact that Alpargatas is having in its communities, and pleased to call them a long-time Timberland partner.

Kicking Off the Holidays with the Mark Wahlberg Youth Foundation

Timberland volunteers with Mark and Jim Wahlberg

A group of Timberland volunteers gave up a Sunday morning during this busy holiday season to share some joy with kids from the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Boston.  Each year, the directors of the various clubs identify the kids with the highest needs, and they receive an invitation to attend a very special holiday party hosted by the Mark Wahlberg Youth Foundation (MWYF).  Timberland has been a part of this event for the past three years, providing our iconic yellow boots to the children that attend.

Timberland boots are just one of many gifts given at the party.  This year, the kids let out a raucous scream of excitement when they learned that they would all be going home with a brand new Play Station Vita.

As Jimmy Wahlberg, director of the MWYF told the Timberland volunteers, the party is held in the spirit of the Wahlberg family’s Christmas and the notion of ‘paying it forward.’  While theirs was a family of limited means, Jimmy says that his parents always made sure that their nine kids had presents under the tree on Christmas morning.

A special treat for the kids and volunteers alike this year was that Mark Wahlberg himself attended the party.  While carrying one of his own children, he reminded the young group of party-goers, “when all you guys grow up and become successful, make sure you give back to the kids that need it, ok?  Don’t forget about the kids in the community.”

The video below showcases some of the highlights from the day.  Our thanks to Anchor Line Web & Screen Works for capturing the experience in video and photos, and to the Mark Wahlberg Youth Foundation for giving us the opportunity to be a part of this memorable holiday tradition.

Clean Energy in Action

Timberland’s passion for preserving the environment drives us to constantly develop new practices for generating clean energy sources. Turns out, we’re in good company. In November 2012, we were recognized as the Corporate Citizen of the Year at the New England Clean Energy Council’s 5th Annual Green Tie Gala. Timberland was the only non-energy company to receive an award.

Factoring in to our selection was our efforts to purchase renewable energy for our European facilities and to source renewable energy for all of our distribution centers—including an on-site solar array at our distribution center in Ontario, California. We’ve developed partnerships to bring clean energy to our Danville, Kentucky distribution center in the heart of coal country and we found a way to purchase 100% renewable energy in Holland. In 2011, 15% of the energy we purchased globally came from renewable energy sources, putting us even closer to our 2015 target of 30%.

Another factor that contributed to Timberland’s selection was achieving an industry-leading 38% greenhouse gas emissions reduction between 2006 and 2011 for the facilities that we own and operate and for our employees’ air travel. At year end, we’ll finalize our 2012 Greenhouse Gas inventory and  report our progress.

Other companies recognized at the 2012 Gala included New England leaders in the energy sector such as Joule Unlimited and Ocean Renewable Power Company (co-winners of Emerging Company of the Year), EnerNOC (Employer of the Year), and Harvest Power (Breakout Company of the Year).

We’re honored to be among these forward-thinking companies, and excited that the energy industry recognizes that a footwear company can be a part of the solution for developing clean power sources and creating a cleaner future.

9 Days, 4,000 Bags, 1 Amazing Experience

Fresh from the bayou, Team Timberland’s Erica Sarcione shares her final thoughts with us about her week-long service sabbatical as part of In Good Company — a partnership of businesses committed to making a difference through hands-on volunteerism for communities in need.  Erica and her fellow service warriors spent their week working on wetlands restoration to help stabilize a fragile barrier island in south Louisiana, where the Mississippi River meets the Gulf of Mexico.

Where the River meets the Gulf. Courtesy of In Good Company.

Well, we did it!!! Lots of time, energy, effort and care was put in over the last 9 days extended to the wetlands restoration project. Many thanks to our partners, Restore the Earth Foundation and the Louisiana Department of Wildlife & Fisheries.

Our accomplishements:

· We packed over 1,000 Gulf Saver Bags with 22,000 pounds of composted humus.

· We moved 4,000 Gulf Saver Bags from barge to boat and from boat to beach.

· We planted a total of 15,000 native plants (Black Mangrove, Smooth Cord Grass, Marshay Grass, Black Needle Rush Grass).

· All in all, we planted approximately 5+ acres!

Our efforts will help to stabilize a fragile ecosystem, add valuable wildlife habitat, and strengthen a much-needed hurricane buffer.

It was an amazing week and I feel privileged to have been chosen for this incredible journey. I am truly a different person because of this experience, and look forward to making more of a difference in this world going forward. I’d also like to send a heartfelt thank you to all the amazing people I met along the way! I will NEVER forget you!

- Erica

In Good Company 2012

We’re proud to support In Good Company and individuals like Erica willing to give their time and energy to projects like this.  To learn more about In Good Company and the good work this year’s team did in Louisiana, visit their Facebook page.