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What is Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)?
Corporate social responsibility (CSR) can be defined as the "economic, legal, ethical, and discretionary expectations that society has of organizations at a given point in time" (Carroll and Buchholtz 2003, p. 36). The concept of corporate social responsibility means that organizations have moral, ethical, and philanthropic responsibilities in addition to their responsibilities to earn a fair return for investors and comply with the law. A traditional view of the corporation suggests that its primary, if not sole, responsibility is to its owners, or stockholders. However, CSR requires organizations to adopt a broader view of its responsibilities that includes not only stockholders, but many other constituencies as well, including employees, suppliers, customers, the local community, local, and national governments, environmental groups, and other special interest groups.

Why is CSR important for Zimbabwe?
The corporate sector is critical for the well being of Zimbabwe in terms of provision of goods and services, contribution to the fiscus, and contribution to employment. The corporate sector operates in an environment of great social challenges and is, therefore, critical for the social well being of the citizens of Zimbabwe from which it derives its profits. Companies need to recognise that they cannot act independently from the society and environment in which they operate. For companies in Zimbabwe, they need to get involved in CSR as it is:

  • An integral part of a successful and sustainable business strategy, pre- empting social and environmental problems while optimizing conditions for long term profitability
  • A link between enterprising, profit- making and social development
  • An integrated management tool for long term profitability and development while supporting short term goals in the areas of government relations and corporate communications
  • A tool that cements corporate accountability to shareholders and corporate accountability to all other stakeholders

What is the role of RCSR?
RCSR is a membership organisation committed to enhancing a culture and practice of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Corporate Social Investment (CSI) across all sectors. The purpose of membership is to tap into the rich diversity of the corporate and social sectors for the benefit of society in Zimbabwe.

Vision
A just and socially responsible community in Zimbabwe.

Mission
To develop and support a body of corporate and social actors committed to the advancement of society in Zimbabwe through socially responsible actions that ensure sustainable development.

Values

  • Accountability
  • Fairness
  • Social justice
  • Integrity
  • Transparency
  • Professionalism

To achieve its Vision and Mission, RCSR has the following objectives:

  1. To advocate and professionalise corporate social responsibility in Zimbabwe
  2. To conduct capacity building in corporate social responsibility and sustainable social investment initiatives through workshops and in-house technical support
  3. To create platforms for dialogue and information sharing on corporate social responsibility
  4. To offer incentives through annual awards for outstanding achievements by various stakeholders
  5. To advance social responsibility research, documentation and dissemination of best practices
  6. To carry out advocacy on issues identified by members

Clients & Stakeholders
The Centre works with private companies, state enterprises, local authorities, faith based organisations, community based organisations, non governmental organisations and corporate citizens who are interested in making a difference in their communities, no matter how small or large the initiatives.