Focus Themes Employee Engagement

Employee Engagement

We encourage all our employees to volunteer for charitable projects. Together with selected partner organizations we address social issues in all the regions in which we operate.

By giving employees the opportunity to dedicate up to four working days on full pay to assist with charitable projects we enhance the value of our financial contributions and actively help to tackle social challenges. Credit Suisse is convinced that employee volunteering creates mutual benefits. By participating in the projects run by our partner organizations, we can gain a better insight into the needs of the people in the communities in which we live and work and build mutual trust. At the same time, these activities further enhance the interpersonal skills of our people and promote team spirit – ultimately strengthening our corporate culture.

Volunteering Worldwide – Selected Figures for 2015


partners receiving both funding and skills-based volunteering support


countries in which our partners are active



Selected Projects 2015

Project Aim Result
Dream Pursuing Mentorship Program

In 2015, Credit Suisse launched its first long-term student mentorship program in partnership with Teach Unlimited Foundation (TUF) in Hong Kong. The 9-month "Dream Pursuing Mentorship" provided a platform for Credit Suisse volunteers to mentor 10 students, aged 16 to 17, from four socially disadvantaged schools in Hong Kong, to help them to develop life and career skills. Mentors and mentees were matched according to their skills, interests, backgrounds and language ability, and have access to support from Teach Unlimited Foundation, as required, throughout the process.

Teach Unlimited Foundation (TUF) was founded in March 2011 and is dedicated to inspiring and preparing young people to succeed in today's world. Their mission is to improve the education prospects for socially disadvantaged students in Hong Kong by providing additional resources and education support.

Sponsoring this mentorship program with Teach Unlimited Foundation gave our 14 staff volunteers the chance to establish meaningful mentoring relationships with their student mentees. Mentors and mentees had the opportunity to participate in a number of charity activities together over the 9 month period and the student mentees were also able to visit the Credit Suisse Hong Kong office and job shadow a wide range of staff to learn more about their backgrounds and work experience. It was an event that brought our staff and students from the local community together.
Teach for China Credit Suisse has been partnering with Teach for China (TFC) since 2012 supporting the recruitment, training and placement of TFC Fellows in under-resourced schools in rural China. During the 3 year partnership Credit Suisse support enabled TFC to recruit, train and place 21 Fellows in under-resourced classrooms in Shantou, Guangdong and Lincang, Yunnan who went on to provide high quality academic instruction and extra-curricular programming to 4,200 students. Aside from the financial assistance, Credit Suisse has supported this partnership through the skills based engagement of our staff in the Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai offices in a Pen Pal exchange program with students from a TFC supported school as well as a mentorship program for second year Fellows who will be leaving the Program. In 2015, Credit Suisse's partnership with TFC continued to grow with a new grant to support in-country Fellow recruitment. With Credit Suisse's support, Teach For China will have the capacity to recruit over 180 of China's outstanding and high-performing graduates to join the 2016-2018 cohort through implementing activities and events on over 80 of China's top university campuses. These Fellows would go on to reach more than 27,600 low-income and rural students through direct in-classroom instruction during the 2015-2016 school year at under-resourced schools in all of their program regions.
Water Security through Education and Community-Led Water Resource Development Project Credit Suisse in India is working with Watershed Organization Trust (WOTR) on a Water security through Education and Community-Led Water Resource Development project in Paner Block, Ahmednagar district, 186 kms away from Mumbai and 125 kms away from Pune. The Paner Block is the driest block in Ahmednagar district and receives average rainfall of 400-500 mm/year, which is highly erratic and uneven resulting in acute drinking water and fodder shortage.

As part of the project that began in March 2015, a three-day volunteering initiative was organized for Credit Suisse staff to understand the Watershed Development and Climate Change Adaptation. Over 50 volunteers signed up for a rural immersion exposure at WOTR's Darewadi Training Centre followed by a sapling plantation drive. The volunteers were hosted by WOTR team at their Darewadi Training Centre and briefed on the water conservation initiatives. Volunteers then on the following days conducted surveys and interacted with villagers understanding their needs and challenges for advanced farming techniques and also participated in a sapling plantation drive at the training centre.

Project Aim Result
City Year UK Pioneer Growth Partnership Credit Suisse has been working with City Year UK since 2010 and became their Pioneer Growth Partner in 2015. As part of this five-year commitment, we are helping the organization to achieve its vision of recruiting 1,000 volunteers by 2020 to support 100 schools in five cities. In addition to our financial and capacity building support, 12 Credit Suisse employees served as mentors in 2015 to City Year UK volunteers, helping them to perform their role as effectively as possible.

In September 2015, City Year UK launched its program in a third city, Manchester, embedding the organization as a national charity.

In 2015 City Year UK also became a beneficiary partner of the Credit Suisse Global Citizens Program welcoming a volunteer to conduct an employability research project aimed at positioning City Year UK as a source of high performing graduate level talent for Britain's top employers.

Charity of the Year – Poland To raise funds for the charity of the year, and to engage an increased number of Credit Suisse employees in volunteering opportunities.

In 2015, the partnership with Wroclaw Children's Hospice created 1,327 volunteering opportunities (total 6,043 hours served) and allowed 947 unique individual volunteers to be engaged.

Employees have elected for the Hospice to be the 2016 Charity of the Year, too

Board Training Programme The Nonprofit Board Training Program at Credit Suisse helps high-level employees – and valued clients – to master the art of nonprofit board service. Aim: To have 100 employees trained, and place employees on boards during 2016. To date (May 2016), over 150 employees attended the launch training event, 56 attended additional training, and placements on Boards have begun.
Project Aim Result
City Harvest To support the organization in its mission to help fight hunger in New York City by providing funding and volunteer support. Over 750 Credit Suisse employees volunteered 2,800 hours, helping to repack 375,000 pounds of food in 2015. Credit Suisse was honored for its long-standing commitment to City Harvest at their annual gala in April 2016.
New York Cares To support a range of causes reflective of the talents and interests of our employees. From hands-on projects, including painting murals, to skills-based volunteerism, including mentoring and serving on the organization's governing board, over 1,500 Credit Suisse employees contributed more than 5,000 hours of service to New York Cares in 2015. Credit Suisse will be recognized for its partnership with New York Cares at their gala in 2016.
Harlem Academy To help the school serve bright, motivated students from underserved communities and prepare them for success at top secondary schools and lifelong learning. In 2015, 97% of Harlem Academy students scored at or above the national median and one-third of students scored in the top 10% in the nation. Across the board, students gain an average of 11 percentile points in their first year at the school.
Project Aim Result
Credit Suisse Jeunes Solistes 2015 Recognize the outstanding achievements of young soloists in the field of classical music and provide them with an opportunity to showcase their talents. In 2015, Serb Vojin Kocić became the first guitarist to win the Prix Credit Suisse Jeunes Solistes. In addition to receiving CHF 25,000 in prize money, he made his debut at the Lucerne Festival in Summer.
Swiss Red Cross Support health and integration programs run by the Swiss Red Cross. Around 2,300 Credit Suisse employees took part in 2015 in a blood donation campaign, a driver pool transport service, the "2x Christmas" campaign and the integration project "Mitten unter uns" (In Our Midst), where Credit Suisseemployees support young immigrants in acquiring language skills.

Global Citizens Program (GCP)

The Global Citizens Program provides a valuable opportunity for employees to immerse themselves in local communities to support the work of our partner organizations in education and microfinance.

The aim of the GCP, launched in 2010, is to promote the transfer of skills and knowledge between our people and social organizations through skills-based volunteering.

The GCP provides opportunities for qualified employees to go on assignment in-country and use their professional skills to build the capacity of our partner organizations in the areas of education and microfinance. By working at a local level, we can respond to the specific needs of our partners and help to develop their projects.

Over the last six years, 210 specialists from various areas of our business have shared their expertise with our partners on the ground – including strategy and product development as well as coaching for employees and managers. They have provided valuable insights to our partners, who are often confronted with challenges due to factors such as rapid expansion or the need to develop new offerings. The learning process often goes both ways for employees and partners participating in the GCP. The Global Citizens Program has also been integrated into our employee training and talent programs to develop leadership and other skills.

GCP in the Area of Education

In 2015, 27 Credit Suisse volunteers were sent to 17 countries to complete training and education assignments with our partners from the Global Education Initiative and the EMEA Foundation as well as the ICRC. The volunteers performed a broad range of tasks from developing a marketing strategy and communications materials to strengthening HR or financial management systems.

Global Citizens Program

Launched in 2010, our Global Citizens Program allows suitably qualified employees to use their expertise to make a direct contribution on the ground to projects run by our global partner organizations, mostly in emerging economies and developing countries.

GCP in the Area of Microfinance

In 2015 twelve of our employees were deployed with five of our microfinance partner organizations in ten countries for a period of up to three months. Assignments focused on implementing best practices in areas such as cash and risk management, credit scoring and client research to support our partners in achieving their social and financial goals.

For detailed information see the Corporate Responsibility Report on page 29.