We have built our history and brand recognition on the idea of community and its varied forms. We play an active citizenship role, providing support with money, expertise and other corporate resources to public and private organizations working in a social, economic, cultural and environmental context.
Our initiatives fall within two main areas: the first is strictly related to our business activity as insurers and regards projects on road safety, health and financial education, with a view to long-term return. The second is directly aimed at improving people’s well-being and encouraging the prosperity of the communities.
In 2016 we maintained the priority areas identified quite some time ago, but we also started a refocusing process, involving all Group employees in the identification of new areas on which to focus our future interventions. The new initiative is called The Human Safety Net and will be presented in 2017.
The priority areas on which we focused are:
- Social and economic inclusion
- Health and safety
- Culture and environment
- Emergency interventions.
In January 2017, we joined the London Benchmarking Group (LBG) and started to reclassify our investments in the community according to their reporting method.
The funds allocated voluntarily to non-profit organisations or organisations pursuing social purposes amounted to € 14.6 million in 2016.
Within these preferential areas, countries operate independently: some channel their resources into a handful of far-reaching initiatives or into a specific theme, while others share the funds among different projects. In some cases, employees are involved in selecting the organizations that will receive the available resources.
In general our companies manage the activities directly, while in Austria, Germany, Italy, the Czech Republic and Hungary we also work with specific local foundations that operate in accordance with their respective articles of association.
Support for initiatives and projects can be provided in different ways:
- financial donations
- donations of goods and services
- donations of time: corporate volunteering.
The Human Safety Net: a call for ideas to define our new approach to the community
In 2016 we embarked on a journey to refocus our interventions in the community seeking to make our funds, skills and people have a broader impact and to further strengthen the sense of belonging to the Group by everyone.
The initiative, called The Human Safety Net, wishes to extend our vision Enhancing people’s lives in order to help disadvantaged people overcome difficulties and change their lives and the lives of their families and of the communities in which they live for the better. In particular, we wished to address issues more closely related to demographic and social change.
In order to identify new focus areas we decided to involve our employees from all over the world, allowing us to rely on richness and diversity of perspectives and on employees’ knowledge of the local communities where we operate which an international group such as ours is able to provide. By engaging our leadership into mobilising their teams with an approach differing from one country to another, a call for ideas was launched between December 2015 and February 2016 which raised over 300 proposals, often resulting from the work of several colleagues belonging to different functions working alongside one another.
The project had to meet a number of welldefined criteria. The leading criteria were:
- impact and repeatability
- the possibility for Generali to involve its people and their skills and expertise
- innovation and the ability to provide new solutions to already known problems
- the ability to create a chain of people helping people, also through the involvement of our stakeholders to participate and contribute.
The projects were evaluated by a committee made up of people inside and outside the Group, under the guidance of the Group Social Responsibility department.
Internally, all Group corporate departments and some country representatives were involved, whereas external third-sector experts helped us to understand which of the projects would better respond to the needs identified and to seek the best partners for their implementation.
In the first months of 2017, the projects will become operational in the first countries that have applied to act as pilot country.
The Human Safety Net has the potential to become important and unique, highlighting the deep human meaning of what we do. It gives us the opportunity to achieve something important together. Philippe Donnet