On July 28, POSCOindiaPC(Chennai Steel, hereinafter, ICPC), which values coexistence with local communities and has been actively engaged in various sharing activities, gifted a cozy shelter so that children can grow with new dreams. Let’s look at the heartwarming scene.
ICPC, located in the southern city of Chennai, India, has been engaged in various community service activities since its establishment in 2010. Among these, the center focuses on supporting children, the nation’s future, so that they can embrace new hope. Approximately 25 million children are born in India each year, but many are in challenging environments and welfare blind spots, so volunteer activities began with the goal of instilling hope in these children.
In 2018, ICPC renovated the aging facilities of an elementary school in Chennai with activities such as painting the building and roof replacement so that children can live safely. In 2021, a new bus stop was established in front of a technical vocational school, and night lighting was installed. Last year saw even more active initiatives. In April, the center installed water purification facilities and provided hygiene education to children suffering from acute dysentery due to contamination in the water supply of a nearby elementary school. In June, a space to play cricket was created for local children, along with the distribution of sports equipment. In July, the center donated educational supplies to children in childcare centers so that they could pursue the studies they desired. Additionally, center employees voluntarily participated in fundraising activities and donated 1-3% of their monthly salaries.
The center didn’t stop there and has been contemplating the corporate role in creating a better society. After careful consideration, they set the goal of “sustainable sharing activities” and initiated a project to build buildings and donate them to the local community starting this year. The first target of this initiative was a nearby orphanage affiliated with the Mother Teresa Educational and Charitable Trust, established in 1982.This organization has lovingly cared for children without parents for 40 years. At the time, around 30 children were living in the facility, which was barely managing to stay in rented premises due to the absence of government support.
The existing facility where the children lived was more than 30 years old, and the external walls were in such poor condition that they were corroded in many places. The slate roof was extensively rusted and had gaps, and leaked when it rained. The foundation supporting the building was weak, so it was not easy to renovate the roof because there was a risk of the building collapsing if renovation was carried out. Recently, during the COVID-19 situation, the confined space made it difficult to implement proper isolation when the children fell ill.
ICPC took action to address these issues. The space was redesigned to accommodate a total of 30 children, where they could eat delicious meals and live in a comfortable environment. The emphasis was on creating a space where hygiene and health could be managed effectively. Let’s see how the new sanctuary for these children has changed!
ICPC designed the building to have two floors to maximize space within the limited area. Thanks to this, a lobby space on the first floor was secured so that the children could gather comfortably in one place. The most significant change was in the bathrooms. Four bathrooms, which were previously located outside and inconvenient to use, were installed inside so that the children could use them comfortably even late at night. The Mother Teresa Educational and Charitable Trust expressed joy and said that thanks to the help of ICPC, they can now take care of more vulnerable children in the newly renovated sanctuary.
The most essential facilities for growing children were the health room and counseling room. With children of various ages living in the orphanage, practical issues prevented tailored counseling or conversations for individuals. Considering this, ICPC established a health room and counseling room in the new sanctuary. The counseling room was decorated in a clean white tone interior to create a comfortable environment for the children to have conversations. The teachers at the orphanage expressed great happiness, saying, “We always felt the need for counseling rooms for growing children. We are pleased that it can contribute to forming the right values and emotional health for the children.” The health room is equipped with a first aid kit to respond appropriately to emergencies and treat the children’s wounds.
When the center staff visited the previous facility, they saw the children’s poor hygiene conditions. The old kitchen was externally connected, filled with external dust and pollutants, and the utensils were old, rusty, and corroded. To address this, ICPC sponsored stainless steel tableware tailored to the needs of the children, and emphasized the importance of hygiene for their health. Additionally, they provided guidance on utensil cleaning methods and food poisoning prevention to the cooking staff and children for thorough hygiene management.
POSCO’s Corporate Citizenship Philosophy Shines as a Guiding Principle in the Area of Overseas Corporate Management
This project, which opened up a bright future for the children, was featured in Chennai’s local newspaper Town News. With this recent initiative, as well as the consistent community service efforts of ICPC, POSCO’s corporate citizenship philosophy has been widely recognized.
ICPC will continue to engage in active corporate citizenship activities not only for children but also for other marginalized groups in need of a helping hand. The center intends to find comprehensive solutions, not just material support, to enhance the capabilities of community members and address real challenges. With the belief that POSCO’s corporate citizenship philosophy is the right path to creating a better and mutually developing society, ICPC pledges to be a steadfast partner in the local community’s journey.