Monetary and Strategic Support Committed Over 3 Years to Expand Reach of World's Largest Humanitarian Network
Submitted by: Coca-Cola Company, The
Posted: Jan 20, 2011 – 10:19 AM EST
ATLANTA, Jan. 20 /CSRwire/ - The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO), the world's largest
beverage company, and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), the world's largest humanitarian organization, today announced a global partnership to expand their collaboration. The Coca-Cola Company will invest $2 million to support the IFRC's work in disaster response and preparedness and public engagement in communities that both organizations serve. Separately, The Coca-Cola Foundation will donate $1 million to the IFRC's Disaster Response Emergency Fund to provide immediate financial support to help Red Cross and Red Crescent National Societies quickly respond to disasters around the world.
"Our partnership with The Coca-Cola Company has the potential to become one of the world's leading business and civil-society collaborations," said Bekele Geleta, Secretary General, IFRC. "It will enable us to extend our reach even farther in communities worldwide so we can be of greater service to vulnerable people. In this era of increasing natural disasters, imagine the magnitude of what we can accomplish together in disaster response and preparedness."
Together with Coca-Cola bottling partners, The Coca-Cola Company and the Red Cross Red Crescent already work together in over 50 countries. This new partnership, which employs the capabilities and expertise of local bottling partners, aims to increase collaboration between the Red Cross Red Crescent and the Coca-Cola System in even more areas around the world, and build on the foundation both partners have developed over nearly a century. For example, immediately after the earthquake in Haiti last January, the Coca-Cola System joined the American and Mexican Red Cross to deliver on-the-ground relief and raise public awareness. In 2009, the Coca-Cola System supported the Italian Red Cross response to the Abruzzo earthquake by providing warehousing, trucks and in-kind supplies. The Coca-Cola System also worked with the Chinese Red Cross after the Sichuan earthquake in 2008, with the Kenya Red Cross throughout the past few years in response to the on-going drought and with the Pakistan Red Crescent in the aftermath of the earthquake in 2005, as well as last year's devastating floods.
The Coca-Cola Company and the IFRC also aim to better engage the public in disaster response, preparedness and the ongoing development and disaster management activities of the Red Cross Red Crescent network. For example, since 2000 the Coca-Cola System in Spain has undertaken a series of innovative marketing communications campaigns to raise funds and awareness for the Spanish Red Cross, and since 2007, The Coca-Cola Company in Netherlands has run a Christmas radio promotion for the Red Cross to raise funds for response to the many 'silent disasters' (e.g. malaria and mining accidents) that are critical but receive less attention than disaster events such as earthquakes and tsunamis.
The potential humanitarian impact of this partnership is significant. The Coca-Cola Company and its bottler partners operate in more than 200 countries with 700,000 employees; and the IFRC represents 186 National Societies with over 100 million volunteers, members and supporters.
"We are proud to partner with an organization that is as effective and globally respected as the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies," said Muhtar Kent, Chairman and CEO of The Coca-Cola Company. "The marriage of our respective skills and expertise will enable us to make a positive difference when we are needed."
The Coca-Cola Company and its bottling partners consistently respond to disasters across the globe, offering cash, beverages, logistical support and the time and effort of employees and other stakeholders. Since 2000, the Coca-Cola System has contributed nearly $40 million in donations to various organizations to aid communities and respond to disasters.
About The Coca-Cola Company
The Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is the world's largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands. Along with Coca-Cola, recognized as the world's most valuable brand, the Company's portfolio includes 12 other billion dollar brands, including Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Coca-Cola Zero, vitaminwater, Powerade, Minute Maid, Simply and Georgia. Globally, we are the No. 1 provider of sparkling beverages, juices and juice drinks and ready-to-drink teas and coffees. Through the world's largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy the Company's beverages at a rate of 1.6 billion servings a day. With an enduring commitment to building sustainable communities, our Company is focused on initiatives that protect the environment, conserve resources and enhance the economic development of the communities where we operate. For more information about our Company, please visit our website at www.thecoca-colacompany.com.
About the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies
The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) is the world's largest humanitarian and development network with nearly 100 million members, volunteers and supporters around the world. Together, we act before, during and after disasters and health crises to meet the needs and improve the lives of vulnerable people. We do so without discrimination as to nationality, race, gender, religious beliefs, class or political opinions. By supporting humanitarian standards, working as partners in development, responding to disasters, and supporting healthier and safer communities, we help reduce vulnerabilities, strengthen resilience and foster a culture of peace. The IFRC, our 186 National Societies and the International Committee of the Red Cross together constitute the International Red Cross Red Crescent Movement. For more information, please visit www.ifrc.org.