Private Sector Urged to Adopt Triple Bottom Line Approach


Chairman of the Culture, Health, Arts, Sports and Education (CHASE) Fund, Dr. Carlton Davis is advocating the triple bottom line approach for private sector entities in Jamaica.
The approach, he explained, entailed companies not only looking at their financial bottom line but also, their environmental and socio-economic responsiveness to communities.
“I think that these [issues] are very important if we are going to develop our society. The government alone cannot do it and an institution like ours alone cannot do it,” he remarked at the launch of CHASE’s annual report, website and billboard campaign at the Terra Nova Hotel recently.
The Chairman noted that firms in both North America and Europe have recognised that they enhanced shareholder value by incorporating the concept of triple bottom line. “This is a challenge to the private sector. There are entities that currently make contributions especially in the area of culture, arts and early childhood education, but could perhaps do a little more,” he stated.
There were many other entities, he added, that were not making any contributions at all, but could support CHASE by helping to deal with the numerous applications for funding.
As it now stands, a major concern for the Fund is that the demand for assistance greatly exceeds available resources and it is anticipated that this problem could worsen in the future. “We feel that if private sector firms were to come on board within the context of the triple bottom line approach, we could do a lot more,” Dr. Davis pointed out.
The Chairman also pointed to the need for greater self-reliance among applicants. “There are cases where people can do some more or seek other sources rather than rely on us entirely,” he stated.
Turning to the annual report for the financial year ending March 31, 2004, the Chairman asserted that the report reflected that the Fund had accomplished “much” since its establishment, almost two years ago.
The report, which is a corporate image piece, designed on the cutting edge, outlines the numerous projects financed by the Fund. “By and large, we think that we have done a reasonably good job as the list of projects ..has illustrated,” the Chairman said.
These projects include the HEART Trust/NTA’s training of 5,000 Early Childhood teachers over five years; the Jamaica Library Service’s Communication Technology Project, which will facilitate interconnectivity among branches across the island, as well as improve computer and Internet access; and, the refurbishing of the Thomas Manning Building, which serves as the library on the campus of Manning’s High School.
In addition, CHASE financed the Jamaica Constabulary Force’s Anti-Crime Social Intervention Programme, to improve facilities in 18 basic schools, as well as upgrading health care and sports complexes in ten parishes.
Numerous organisations, such as the Multicare Foundation, Edna Manley College for the Visual & Performing Arts, Liberty Hall, Milk River Bath, University Hospital, Bellevue Hospital and the Bustamante Hospital for Children, have also benefited from the Fund.
“In pursuing our work, we have attempted to achieve a balance among the many demands. For example, we had to balance urban considerations and needs with rural considerations and needs, inner city with uptown, ethnic considerations, physical infrastructure versus education/training, one type of art versus another indigenous art like a reggae opera,” Dr. Davis noted.
Meanwhile, Billy Heaven, Chief Executive Officer of CHASE said that the Fund had established an Internet presence with the mounting of its website, www.chase.org.jm, which he said was one of many initiatives to communicate and enhance the Fund’s customer service delivery.
Prospective applicants or researchers will be able to log on to an attractive and well laid out site, where they will be able to gather information on the guidelines for completing application forms for funding. Persons will also be able to keep abreast of the projects approved by the Fund as well as activities pursued by the Fund.
In addition, information about the Courtney Walsh Award for Excellence can also be found on the website. Persons are being encouraged to submit their nominations on application forms that are available on the site to the CHASE Fund and sports organizations.
So far, the Fund has approved 120 projects for a value of $508.8 million and disbursed $312.6 million to projects islandwide.

JIS Social