WACKER HILFSFONDS (WACKER’s relief fund) is dedicated to providing unbureaucratic, long-term aid, especially in the wake of natural disasters. The fund’s board members and trustees work on a voluntary basis. So far, Wacker Chemie AG has always matched all employee contributions to the fund.
One of the first projects that the relief fund supported after its foundation in 2005 was the construction of the school in Kosgoda, Sri Lanka. The fund continues to support the running of this school. Located in a region destroyed by the 2004 tsunami, the school was opened in 2006. WACKER HILFSFONDS uses its cent-donation program to ensure that the funding covers the costs involved in teaching over 200 students. Plus, there are another 180 students in the associated kindergarten and orphanage, not to mention the young people attending the affiliated vocational training center. In 2016, the WACKER College in Kosgoda celebrated its tenth anniversary.
The over 4,100 employees who participate in the WACKER relief fund cent-donation program consent to having their monthly salary rounded down to the nearest euro – the difference in cents is then donated to the relief fund. On average, the participating employees donate 50 cents per month. This amount is then matched by the company for a monthly total of over €4,100, which equates to an annual donation of about €49,000.
In the spring of 2015, large areas of Nepal were devastated by two severe earthquakes in which more than 9,000 people died and 600,000 homes were destroyed. The WACKER relief fund has selected a project for the development and maintenance of schools. The fund supports the student-run charitable organization Namaste Nepal S-GmbH based in Freiberg. Since 2005, this charity has been involved with a Nepalese aid organization concerned with projects such as the construction and running of schools and kindergartens in the Sindhupalchok province. WACKER responded with an initial donation of €50,000. WACKER employees have donated more than €30,000, which the company has doubled.
Parts of the Lower Bavaria region were hit by a once-in-a-century flood in June 2016, which affected many of WACKER’s employees. The relief fund run by Wacker Chemie AG gave the district of Rottal-Inn a donation of €100,000 in emergency aid for flood victims. The company also asked employees to support affected colleagues by making donations to fund. Employees responded in large numbers, donating approximately €156,000. The company matched employee donations and increased this amount further to €188,000, thus providing a total of €500,000 to be paid out over the course of 2017 to those affected.