CSR & multi-sectors partnership: a multi-sectors discussion forum by konsil lsm in sulawesi tenggara (25 september 2014)

“Pak, we feel tired to chase company to put aside their CSR fund and then give it to us for our proposed program,” said a woman participant, a coordinator of local NGO, during a forum in Kendari last September, “please teach us the success way to get CSR funding from private sector.”

On 25 September 2014, IBL has been invited by Konsil LSM (www.konsillsm.or.id) chapter Sulawesi Tenggara as one of speakers on their workshop on Multi-sectors partnership for sustainable development. As appointed by IBL Executive Director, Mohamad Fahmi – IBL Business Ethics Program Manager – has shared understanding about Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), using ISO 26000 as a basic reference, and about Partnership principles on building multi-sectors partnership for sustainable development.

Continuously, on every forum, IBL has been emphasizing that CSR is not only about funding. As being spoken of one of forum’s participants as mentioned above, the bias perception, that CSR is community development funding, is always heard in community, spoken by most people, NGO’s leaders or government officers, especially in local area. For some area, it is a kind of mandatory that company should put aside some amount from its net profit as CSR funding, burdening the private sector without knowing the real impact of doing CSR. On the other hand, the fund is spent by implementing partners – they could be NGOs or local government agencies – sometimes without transparency and accountability.

This forum was targeting to provide an understanding that CSR is about the sustainability of corporation, emphasizing that the bottom lines of private sector not only on profit but also on social and environment. On practicing CSR, private sector is encouraged to build partnership with other stakeholders based on three principles: (1) Equity, (2) Transparency, and (3) Mutual Benefit. The NGOs or CSOs should build their organization accountability and propose mutual-benefit programs to private sector. The government role is to provide regulation that enables multi-sectors partnership based on those principles to be practiced. Without those principles, the partnership will not survive or sustain and there will be no good impact for all stakeholders.