People in action – Our communities

The communities in which we live and operate are vital to us. Around the world, our communities
comprise our neighbours, friends, schools and hospitals, the places and people that support our lives and those of our families. We have a commitment to supporting them wherever we can.

We aim to support where we feel we can make a difference on an issue in which we have expertise or usefulness – either in a personal or a professional capacity. In doing so, we take pride in playing our part as a local corporate citizen.

A growing number of our offices around the world have formal volunteering policies, including a region-wide policy in Asia Pacific, one in the US, Belgium, Hungary, and most recently, Japan, offering colleagues up to two days off a year to get out into the community. This year in our Headquarters in St-Prex Switzerland, after wide consultation, we are in the process of considering a formal set of volunteering guidelines which we intend to share with other markets to encourage further take-up.

In 2019, we received over 100 submissions of community and sustainability projects from around the world. While we are unable to showcase them all here, we share a few below.

Supporting families of in-house patients – Ireland

Hugh’s House is a charity providing accommodation to the families of children who are long-term in-patients of Dublin-based children and maternity hospitals. Families with severely ill children are under severe pressure, often separated at a time when they need each other the most. The provision of family accommodation near the hospitals provides a home-away-from- home for children and families outside of a ward environment. The Ferring Ireland team (16 people) volunteered a full day to undertaking cooking, cleaning and preparing the homes for each of the resident families to come home to after a long day spent caring for their sick children in hospital.

Supporting children with developmental challenges – Taiwan

In Taiwan, a number of childhood developmental challenges can be treated if detected early. However, state support is limited, and most parents do not spot the signs soon enough. In doing so, they miss out on opportunities for early treatment. In 2019 a team of Ferring Taiwan employees spent the day with a local non-profit supporting 20 children aged 2-6 years, helping them with simple learning and playing tasks. The team also made a donation to support the ongoing running of the organisation.

Food baskets at Ferring’s Philosophy Day event in the US

Learning and science for future generations – Denmark, Israel

Science and learning are close to our hearts, and we are keen to work actively with schools and universities to support and inspire the next generation of scientists. In Denmark, Ferring has an ongoing programme of activities in therapeutic areas in which we have expertise, providing both in-kind support as well as mentoring support for post-graduate life science students in Copenhagen and Lund Universities. In Israel, our state-of-the-art bio-tech manufacturing site is host to several groups of students during the year to introduce them to the world of science and technology. Additionally, as part of science week, colleagues gave lectures and workshops in the nearby town of Kiryat Malachi on a range of subjects, including medical patents, medical safety and women in science.

Nourishing those in need – USA

Our US office has a very active volunteering culture, in part as a result of our Ferring Philosophy Day. Of the range of activities that we were involved
with during the year, several were dedicated to providing food for those in need. Colleagues from eight Ferring departments volunteered to help
staff at Nourish New Jersey in Morristown, New Jersey prepare and serve lunch and organise donations. The centre provides free meals and offers other support services including mental health counselling, support for veterans and those suffering from substance abuse.

A further six members from the Sales Analytics team spent a day on a farm in Pittstown with Grow-A-Row to plant vegetables for distribution to poor families. It was strenuous but rewarding work. Grow-a-Row is an organisation that grows and harvests fresh, healthy produce that is donated to soup kitchens, crisis centres and food banks across the region.

Putting waste to work – South Africa

During the course of 2019, Ferring South Africa was involved in a (now world-wide) initiative to build much-needed community facilities (ranging from schools to park benches) out of eco-bricks. An eco-brick is a plastic bottle stuffed tightly with clean and dry non-recyclable materials. A response to the burgeoning plastic bottle waste, they have been used around the world for over 20 years as an insulated low-cost, low-tech building material, which would otherwise end up in land fill. Our South Africa team has been making and collecting eco-bricks throughout the year. Each brick made promotes understanding of the value of recycling and repurposing of materials we use in the community.

A good corporate citizen – Mexico

For the eighth year in a row, Ferring Mexico has been awarded the title “Empresa Socialmente Responsable” (Socially Responsible Business)
by CEMEFI, Centro Mexicano para la Filantropia (The Mexican Centre for Philanthropy). The award is based on an assessment of evidence in a range of different areas: ethics and corporate governance, work-life balance, community and the environment.

We also celebrate many other projects undertaken by colleagues across the globe, including in Poland, Hungary, Korea, Singapore, France, Finland, Japan, Brazil and the Netherlands.

Collaboration for our cook book played a big part in this initiative and the end result speaks for itself.

Tamzyn Fellows-Smith
Medical Science Liason, Ferring South Africa