Sealed Air Receives CSR Impact Award for Soap For Hope Programme

Friday, October 9, 2015

Charlotte, NC – Sealed Air Corporation (NYSE: SEE) was named the winner of the CSR Impact category in the 2015 Asian CSR Awards presented at the 14th Asian Forum on Corporate Social Responsibility (AFCSR) held from 8-9 September at the Shangri-La Hotel in Bangkok, Thailand.

Sealed Air’s Himanshu Jain, Vice President for the Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia, received the award from His Excellency M.R. Pridiyathorn Devakula, Former Deputy Prime Minister, Kingdom of Thailand at the awards ceremony. The CSR Impact Award honours a programme that has an on-going track record of significant sustainable impact, is innovative and easily replicated. 

From among 134 entries from 12 countries, Sealed Air’s Soap for Hope programme was among more than 134 entries from 12 countries competing for the CSR Impact Award. The programme is a partnership that starts with local hotels that are customers of Sealed Air. Sealed Air collects and channels used guest soap to local communities for recycling. The reconstituted bars of soap are then distributed back to the local communities. 

The programme's objective is three-fold: to save lives by promoting a cleaner and healthier environment through proper hand-washing with soap;  to provide a means of livelihood for local communities through learning a new skill; and to help hotels reduce waste by recycling used or discarded soap. Once used soap is collected from the hotels, Sealed Air transports them to local communities and teaches the local people to re-process soap using a specially customised cold-press method that requires no running water and electricity. The reconstituted soap bars are then distributed to communities that have limited access to basic hygiene amenities.

“A typical 400-room hotel generates 3.5 metric tons of solid soap waste per year,” said Stefan Phang, Sealed Air’s Director of Sustainability and CSR.  “Hand-washing with soap is among the most effective and inexpensive ways to prevent diarrhoea and respiratory diseases in developing regions. Soap for Hope addresses waste reduction and hygiene enhancement at the same time, while also generating livelihoods for local communities.” 

Soap for Hope was first launched in Cambodia in 2013. Since then, it has been implemented in multiple Asian countries and expanded beyond the region. Soap for Hope’s most recent launch was in Vietnam which was a resounding success with participation from 11 hotels. Soap for Hope is now in 17 cities across 11 countries including Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia, China, United Arab Emirates, Kenya and South Africa. Currently, 120 hotels are supporting the programme and more than 160,000 beneficiaries gain free access to soap every year. 

“Soap for Hope is a very real example of creating shared value for all parties involved – our customers, the NGOs, the local communities and Sealed Air employees. Every party plays a critical role and has embraced the Soap for Hope programme enthusiastically,” said Himanshu Jain. “We are honoured to be recognised with this award and thankful to all those who have contributed to this programme’s success.  We look forward to growing the programme in more locations in the future.”

The Asian CSR Awards programme was conceived by the Asian Institute of Management-Ramon V. del Rosario, Sr. Center for Corporate Social Responsibility (AIM-RVR CSR Center) in 2003 to honour Asian organisations that embody the principles of corporate responsibility in their business philosophy and operations. Awards are given to programmes that achieve excellence in terms of services to stakeholders and innovative sustainable solutions to pressing social challenges. Awardees should demonstrate the company’s leadership, sincerity and on-going commitment to incorporating ethical values, compliance with legal requirements, respect for individuals, involvement in communities and protection of the environment into the way they do business. Each year, the awards are given in several categories: Environmental Excellence, Education Improvement, Poverty Alleviation, Health Enhancement and CSR Impact.


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