"Mazda supports children, because children are our future," explains Petra Gerntholtz of Mazda Motor Europe (MME).
MME is Mazda's representative company which supervise over 30 countries national sales company in Europe.
Mazda wants to give back to local communities in Europe that have helped Mazda grow. In order to do this, MME has been participating in a number of welfare activities, disaster assistance activities, and other community-based activities throughout Europe.
Mazda is utilizing its wide-reaching network to meet the needs of local communities more than ever before. "If our national sales companies in Europe use the "One Mazda" approach, I think we can carry out far-reaching activities rooted in local communities," says Gerntholtz, who originally proposed cooperative efforts between MME and SOS Children's Villages, an international NGO. Local SOS Children's Village organizations in countries throughout Europe help children and young people who are unable to live with their own families, and the areas of their charitable activities overlap with those of MME's.
Mazda creates automobiles based on the "Zoom-Zoom" concept–for those people who remember the joy of movement they first felt as a child. Through this concept, Mazda wants to nurture children who can enjoy and be excited about many different things. "We at Mazda want to help make children happier," concurred the MME management, launching cooperative activities between Mazda and SOS Children's Villages in 2008.
At each of the six participating MME national sales companies (Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Germany and Hungary), one "ambassador" (local project coordinator) was chosen from among the staff to lead charitable activities in each country. Austria's sales company, for example, supported the construction of a new building for a group of children that live in a therapeutically-assisted environment, and Germany made a donation of new training equipment and renovation materials to an automobile training center in Nuremberg.
Says a representative from SOS Children's Villages, "Thanks to Mazda, we have been able to expand the scope of our activities and have a positive impact on the lives of many children. I think the partnership between our organization and Mazda is an absolutely ideal match, and we hope to continue working together in the future."
Even though not all MME employees are taking part in these projects directly, the internal MME newsletter and information spread through the Mazda Intranet have been drawing employee attention to company efforts. "Many of my colleagues have been telling me how highly they think of the company's charitable activities. It makes me feel good to see people proud of the company they work for," confides Gerntholtz.
We will keep the idea that "children are our future" close to heart as we continue our joint efforts with SOS Children's Villages.