Infrastructure projects bring opportunities to local communities by providing employment, creating a demand for services and materials which helps the local economy, and improves resident’s quality of life via the provision of safe and reliable energy. Wherever we locate or operate a business—whether it is power generation, a utility or a renewable energy initiative—we seek to create deep, meaningful relationships with the communities we serve. We recognize that our contributions need to involve not just providing a critical service, but making investments in the people and infrastructure of that community.
We have a company-wide document with guidelines for developing Sustainable Corporate Social Responsibility Programs. These guidelines, suitable to different local contexts, provide tools for AES businesses to develop and implement sustainable social responsibility programs that are beneficial for our core business and the sustainable development of the communities in which the company operates. We encourage our businesses to custom-tailor community engagement programs to ensure the most effective, efficient and beneficial local contribution that can make a community stronger economically, socially or environmentally. We also understand that our impact within a community can be deepened through partnerships with local stakeholders and non-government organizations, and we encourage our businesses to pursue such relationships.
Some of our programs designed improve education and living standards include: access to electricity and basic services; education and training, providing vocational training and employment opportunities for young people; safety education, environmental conservation, among others. During 2013, all the programs donations and sponsorships benefited more than 600,000 people directly and over 24 million people indirectly.
While the programs we invest in may differ from community to community, our goal is consistent: To have a positive impact and make a lasting difference in the communities in which we operate. More details as well as examples of programs can be found in our Sustainability Reports.