Habitats and Happy Hearts
    Category: Philanthropy By : Ardian Wibisono Read : 2354 Date : Tuesday, August 06, 2013 - 06:03:50

    Ahmad Zamroni / Forbes Indonesia

    Following the Yogyakarta earthquake in 2006, Jimmy Masrin, president director and chief executive of PT Caturkarsa Megatunggal, was struck by the devastation there. He responded with a fundraising drive within his company and by sending a team of volunteers, including family members and co-workers, to volunteer with Habitat for Humanity (HFH).

    Now, nearly a decade later, Jimmy continues a commitment through his company's extensive corporate social responsibility (CSR) program as well as through his personal endeavors as chairman of HFH Indonesia. Jimmy also serves as a newly elected member of both the HFH international board of directors and the Happy Hearts Fund board of directors.

    That initial fundraiser in 2006 raised enough for 45 homes through HFH, and laid the groundwork for what would become a comprehensive CSR program for PT Lautan Luas, a subsidiary of Caturkarsa Megatunggal, which manufactures and distributes chemicals. “At that time, we didn't have a real CSR program,” says Jimmy, “But I had the wish to give back. So we sent a team of 30 volunteers to Yogyakarta, and we got to know the families of the homes we were building for. That was my inspiration.”

    Jimmy continued to support and volunteer for HFH, and was invited to the board of HFH Indonesia in 2008. HFH Indonesia is a branch of the global nonprofit organization, Habitat for Humanity International, and is famous for its programs of home building along with other programs dealing with water sanitation and hygiene.

    Since 1997, HFH Indonesia has helped more than 39,000 families as of this year. Last year, Jimmy and Lautan Luas employees built or renovated 34 houses in cooperation with HFH Indonesia. “I was in the wrong place at the wrong time, or the right place at the right time, depending on how you look at it,” says Jimmy. 

    In 2009, Jimmy established a CSR program for his company. Today, Lautan Luas commits 2% of its net profit to CSR, which last year came to Rp 1.5 billion. The company's CSR program, however, extends beyond merely giving funds. In Jimmy's opinion, a key component essential to a meaningful CSR program is personal involvement. “If a company gets involved and participates, like in the HFH case, you actually go to the site and build homes. It's very hands on for the employees; you get to meet the families, talk with the villagers, and it's more direct. You need involvement at many different levels, rather than just giving funds,” he says. These days Jimmy likes to participate in a build about once a month. The company's CSR program now supports a wide range of projects, with a focus on serving the poor, clean water supply, and regional programs.