Corporate social responsibility towards AIDS orphans in South Africa : trends in the motor manufacturing sector and guidelines for corporate action

Neethling, Marcha (2005-04)

Thesis (MPhil)--Stellenbosch University, 2005.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The HIV/AIDS pandemic is destroying young adults in the prime of their lives. Children not only become orphans, but also gain instant “adult” status – becoming heads of households, breadwinners and customers. Children who fill such roles must be recognised as important stakeholders with regard to business. As limited available estimations suggest that South Africa is home to 800 000 orphans, corporations must realise that it will make good business sense to invest in the country’s AIDS orphans1 today, as these children will constitute both their future clients and employees. This study examines trends in the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiatives of five major corporations in the South African motor manufacturing sector. AIDS orphans were also involved in the study through participation in three focus group discussions. The evidence reveals that corporations do not recognise AIDS orphans as important stakeholders to business, nor do they see it as their responsibility to carry the burden of care for such children. Orphans felt that corporations in this business sector do not care about their needs and well-being. They regarded companies who were involved in CSR projects in their communities as “caring” and this resulted in the children hosting positive feelings towards involved companies. They even expressed the desire to purchase their brand of motor vehicle, as opposed to competitor’s brands that were not involved (through CSR) in their community, in future.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die MIV/VIGS pandemie is besig om die lewens van jongmense te verwoes. Kinders word nie alleenlik wees gelaat nie, maar word ook oornag volwassenes. Hulle word die hoof van huishoudings, broodwinners en kliënte vir besighede. Kinders wat hierdie rolle vervul moet daarom as belangrike aandeelhouers in die besigheidswêreld erken word. Beperkte skattings veronderstel dat Suid-Afrika tans ongeveer 800 000 weeskinders huisves. Besighede moet, in die lig hiervan, besef dat dit goeie besigheidssin maak om in VIGSWeeskinders1 te belê, aangesien hierdie kinders hul toekomstige kliënte en werknemers is. Hierdie studie ondersoek tendense in besighede se sosiale verwantwoordelikheidsinitiatiewe (“Corporate Social Responsibility Initiatives”), binne die motorvervaardigingsbedryf van Suid- Afrika. VIGS-Weeskinders was ook nouliks by die studie betrokke, deur middel van deelname aan drie fokusgroepbesprekings. Die studie het bewys dat besighede nie VIGSWeeskinders as belangrike aandeelhouers erken nie, en dat dit ook nie as hul plig gesien word om na weeskinders om te sien nie. Weeskinders, daarenteen, was van die opinie dat besighede in dié bepaalde bedryf nie omsien na hul welstand, of probeer om in hul behoeftes te voorsien nie. Kinders het wel besighede wat betrokke is by sosiale verwantwoordelikheidsinitiatiewe in hul gemeenskappe, beskryf as “liefdevol”, en dit het daartoe gelei dat kinders positiewe houdings jeens sulke besighede gehuldig het. Kinders het selfs die behoefte uitgespreek om, eendag eerder handelsmerke se voertuie te koop wat wel sosiale verwantwoordelikheidsinitiatiewe in hul gemeenskappe bedryf, as dié wat niks doen om hul lot te verlig nie.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/50306
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