Community Programmes

Our philosophy
At 3M we believe that commercial success and corporate responsibility are inseparable, so we are committed to making a fitting contribution to the communities in which we have plants or offices.

Our community programme is not about reacting to general requests for cash donations - it is a proactive programme focused on those areas where we believe our contribution can make a real difference. We aim to support organisations that help communities help themselves.

We do this through donations and in-kind gifts of 3M products and services, the use of 3M facilities, encouragement of employee volunteering and through matching our employees' fundraising achievements.

Our national programme
Road accidents are the single biggest cause of death among five to 14 year olds and the Department for Transport has set a target to reduce the number of children killed or seriously injured on the roads by 50 per cent by 2010.

Helping achieve this target is the main focus of our community activity. Working closely with the Department for Transport, Local Authorities, Road Safety Officers and direct with local schools, since 2005 we donated almost 100,000 high-visibility reflective vests to Key Stage 2 pupils at primary schools located in regions where 3M has a presence. To support this programme, we also sponsored Quantum Theatre for Science to go into many of these schools to perform a play specifically linked to school travel plans (walking buses, cycle training etc.), promoting road safety messages in a fun and entertaining way.

In 2006 we built on our child road safety initiative. We also developed a free web-based educational tool, 3M Streetwise, to help schools the length and breadth of the UK to teach road safety messages, as well as looking at the scientific principles of light, sound and forces - all part of the National Curriculum. Teachers can access a great teaching medium at a click of a button. The website features interactive activities, an animated film and a game to encourage pupils and parents alike to learn and check their level of understanding of road safety issues.

In 2007 we developed the site further, with additional pages focusing specifically on safe cycling. Our Community Programme was recognised with a "Big Tick" from Business in the Community; was shortlisted for the Corporate Social Responsibility Award by the Chartered Institute of Public Relations (in both 2007 and 2008) and reached the regional finals of the National Business Awards. 3M is proud to be a headline sponsor of Road Safety Week, organised by Brake, the road safety charity.

In 2008 we launched a revised version of the website specifically for use in the Republic of Ireland. 3M Roadwise is endorsed by the Irish Road Safety Authority and meets NCCA guidelines relevant to SPHE and science.

Our local programmes
Different communities have different needs, so each of our UK locations has some limited funding available so they can direct support to the areas of greatest need.

Recognising that we cannot possibly support all the many worthy causes which might seek support, our local campaigns are focused on two areas:

1. Education
We believe in bridging the gap between classroom and work place by forging links with local schools through activities relevant to the academic curriculum. As a company with innovation at its heart, we are particularly keen to support the science and technology curriculum and help stimulate young minds.

2. Environment
We are committed to promoting healthier, safer and more environmentally aware communities, in line with our strong reputation for environmental responsibility, which for more than 30 years has focused on preventing pollution at source.
In order to be considered for support, projects must fall within one or both of these topic areas and relate to a community in which 3M has a site presence (view map (pdf 113KB)).

Proposals must also fulfil one or more of the criteria:
. be a registered UK charitable concern (no individuals/teams/third party fundraisers or requests for funds for overseas can be considered)
. address a specific identified local community need
. involve 3M volunteers
. on completion, be able to demonstrate measurable results.

For more information, please Contact Us and reference Community