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Caritas Switzerland has for many years attached great importance to sustainability in its projects, its political engagement and its internal work. At the centre of all activities is the contribution to sustainable development in Switzerland and worldwide. In doing so, it acts in accordance with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (Agenda 2030). It is active on environmental, economic and social issues and aims to be a responsible employer.
Commitment to the environment
Caritas Switzerland aims to be climate neutral by 2030 at the latest. To this end, CO2 accounting is carried out regularly which enables the impact of activities to be calculated and to take the necessary measures to ensure that emissions are constantly reduced. In addition, emissions can be offset via an internal climate fund. The proceeds are invested in selected Caritas projects with a special focus on sustainability.
Caritas Switzerland regularly makes its employees aware of these issues, for example with regard to mobility: Employees are encouraged to use public transport to commute to work. Business trips are kept to a minimum, organised as effectively as possible, and use rail travel within Europe.Wherever possible, digital communication channels are used for project work in order to avoid travel. In international development cooperation, local journalists illustrate the projects. At internal events and occasions involving the public and donors, appetisers and meals are exclusively vegetarian. Caritas Switzerland focuses on optimising the energy consumption of the buildings it uses and promotes green electricity. In addition, green IT and digitalisation measures are developed for all employees
In addition to the cost-effectiveness of its projects, Caritas gives priority to local sourcing and local public contracts. Caritas Switzerland strives to use its resources efficiently and provides transparent information about the work done, structures, as well as the origin, deployment and impact of the funds used. Its investment policy is based on ecological and ethical approaches, and sustainability criteria are also applied in the management of the pension fund.
Social commitment and responsibility as an employer
Caritas Switzerland also promotes sustainability at the political and social level. With its lobbying work, it advocates the enforcement of human rights and exerts its influence on environmental, climate, social, migration, financial and economic policy.
With regard to working conditions, Caritas places particular emphasis on equal pay, options of part-time work and home office work, a broad range of training and further training opportunities and occupational health management. In addition, it is involved in vocational training and offers integrative work opportunities. It also acts as a socially responsible partner towards the staff association.
Caritas as an actor for sustainable development
Caritas’ projects contribute to sustainable development in Switzerland and abroad. In developing countries, Caritas Switzerland promotes sustainable farming methods and sustainable forms of energy. In Switzerland, it also contributes to sustainability, for example with the Clothing Centre, in the youngCaritas project Faires Lager (sustainable youth camp) and the various integration projects. Caritas Switzerland strives to constantly improve its commitment to sustainability.