Mekar Makes CSR More Impactful and Sustainable
As the calendar winds down, your company is probably preparing for an end-of-the-year corporate social responsibility (CSR) event. It is, after all, required by Indonesian law. Unfortunately, for many companies, CSR is often seen as something of a bolt-on or afterthought. Firms would set aside some leftover funding to make a cash donation to local communities or build a monument in a local park, then they tick the CSR box and move on to the next task.
Often there is very little thought put into how CSR activities can really benefit those who are on the receiving ends of it, or how the cash donation or charity can have a long term effect on people’s livelihood. Sure, cash handouts can, arguably, help the poor, but charity schemes like this mostly work if the payout is given regularly — for example, on a monthly basis. Whereas, company CSRs are usually done just once or two times a year, thus it is hard to see any real, major social impact from such CSR schemes.
Read also: Disasters, Sticks and Carrots. The Evolution of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in Indonesia
A New Way to Do CSR
But times are changing. Today, thanks to innovation in financial technology (FinTech), companies can devise a new CSR model that is more sustainable as it will benefit the targeted communities in the longer term and have a real, sizeable impact on their livelihood.
Mekar, a peer-to-peer lending platform, provides the perfect tool for this new way to do CSR. As one of the leading innovators in Indonesia’s FinTech scene, Mekar is using technology to connect investors (including companies) with small business owners from many different regions throughout the country. Companies can contact Mekar or simply sign up on Mekar’s website, mekar.id, and use their CSR funds to invest in hundreds of small business loans that are listed on the platform. By doing this, they are creating an impactful and highly sustainable CSR program.
Mekar partners with savings and loan cooperatives with offices in rural areas. These cooperatives have years of experience under their belt in loan management and empowerment of Indonesian small businesses. Mekar works together with these cooperatives to vet the borrowers to make sure their business is creating positive impact for their environment and surrounding community.
Flexible and Convenient
With Mekar, your company’s CSR can take many forms, including, but not limited to:
- Increasing access to finance for the poor so that they can start or grow their business.
- Helping poor people in rural areas with the funding they need to build a proper sanitation facility.
It is very convenience to assign your company’s CSR funds to invest through Mekar, and there are many benefits for your company, among them are:
- Good use of your CSR budget: your company’s CSR is supporting the growth of Indonesian micro, small and medium-sized enterprises.
- Positive Branding: You can publish your CSR activities that are managed by Mekar in your website; Mekar will also include your company’s CSR achievements in Mekar’s marketing campaign.
- Target-Specific: The companies have the option to choose the borrowers they want to lend to. So, for example, if your company’s CSR goal is to empower farmers, your company can choose to only lend to borrowers whose business is in the agriculture sector.
- Transparent: Every investment is professionally managed and the whole process is transparent, so every investor knows exactly to whom their money goes and what it is being used for.
To learn about other advantages of Mekar’s CSR scheme, please contact Mekar’s Commercial Director Randy Gunadi at email@example.com.