As an organization dedicated to making products that improve people’s lives, one that values the differences and talents of every team member, we recognize the importance of the United Nations designating 12/3 as International Day of Persons with Disabilities.
People with disabilities are an integral part of our team at Flex. On October 18–29 of this year, we held our annual People with Disabilities (PwD) Awareness Weeks. This two-week observance provided an opportunity for employees to deepen their understanding of others’ diverse experiences and get involved in their local communities. Team members were invited to participate in educational seminars and trainings, as well as partake in a wide range of volunteer projects and awareness activities.
Many of our global locations got involved to further strengthen our collaborative and inclusive culture. Our sites conducted 216 events globally in which 25,000 employees participated. We conducted 84 training sessions and had more than 2,000 team members volunteer worldwide.
While each activity made a difference, we recognize those sites whose initiatives stood out during this year’s PwD Awareness Weeks. These programs aligned to our Inclusion & Diversity (I&D) strategy as well as the labor practices and community pillars of our 2030 sustainability goals.
Our Chennai site created a comprehensive suite of initiatives in support of PwD Awareness Weeks. Events kicked off with an awareness campaign on the virtual desktop of every employee’s computer screen as well as a leadership promotion video about the upcoming programming.
Site team members were invited to participate in a PwD step-a-thon. The theme was to cultivate a culture of inclusion by walking for a social cause. The event helped build greater awareness and completed steps were converted into donations for one of Flex India’s sustainability causes.
Another activity was a sign language training class whose theme was “let’s sign to talk.” Multiple seminars were conducted, including one on power and privilege and another on how employees can be a better ally to people with disabilities.
There was also widespread support for local NGOs. Team members gathered and disbursed grocery packages for The Ganga Foundation, an organization dedicated to supporting those with spinal cord injuries. There was also an onsite volunteering engagement with NGO Help Trust, a social services organization.
One of the observance’s highlights was the announcement that Flex GBS India won a silver medal in SSON Asia’s Diversity & Inclusion Impact category, recognizing the business impact of creating a culture of inclusion across the full spectrum of diversity in shared services and global business services.
Jaguariuna held nine activities during the observance that focused on furthering inclusion, including some activities that allowed staff to temporarily experience life from the perspective of a person with a disability. A main goal for the awareness campaign was to promote understanding among employees.
More than 420 Flex team members attended at least one of the four webinars held on special education and inclusive education. Participants received a historical context on the evolution of special education and how it has evolved into a more inclusive teaching modality.
Jaguariuna partnered with Faculdade Anhanguera, one of the largest professional educational organizations in Brazil, to offer accessible and discounted courses to team members with disabilities.
Additionally, Jaguariuna donated more than 800 kg of food to Casa da Criança Paralytic de Campinas (CCP), a non-profit organization that provides free rehabilitation treatment for children and adolescents with physical and neurological disabilities.
Budapest’s activities were noted for the variety of activities that team members participated in and supported, including education webinars, a volunteer program, and monetary donations.
An interview was conducted with Antal Puskás, a hiker who is visually impaired and completed all 2,500 km (1,580 miles) of the famous National Blue Trail in one year. Antal shared stories from his hikes, his unique challenges and successes as well as how he uses his life experience to inspire others.
Another popular webinar was a session conducted with The Foundation for Limbless Children. This non-profit organization supports the physical and intellectual development of children with limb deficiency. Representatives of the foundation shared insights about their work and ways employees could make an impact.
A volunteer project was carried out at the Dio School, an organization that provides education and skills development for 80 children with intellectual disabilities along with day care and residential care services.
Budapest staff built a barefoot path in the schoolyard, renovated playground toys, and helped with autumn gardening. The team covered the cost of the barefoot path as well as made a commitment to purchase tablets and laptops for the school.