Krakow Business Run: CSR beyond philanthropy

Luxoft’s mission statement focuses on going beyond client expectations by bringing together technology, talent, innovation and highest quality standards.
We apply the ‘go beyond’ mantra to all aspects of our operations, believing that the competitiveness of our business and the health of the communities around us are interdependent. That’s why for many years we have been running educational, charity, and sport initiatives that help the societies we are a part of. Corporate Social Responsibility has become an important pillar of our strategy and we believe it will have a longterm positive impact on our business.
Over the past year, Luxoft has run 15 different CSR initiatives spanning from educational programs to sport events to philanthropy. One that we are particularly proud of is the Krakow Business Run 2012.
Antony Roberts-York, CEO of UBS Poland Service Centre, initiated this unique project. The idea was to bring together three different types of stakeholders: business, city authorities, and an NGO organization with the aim to raise money for the foundation of choice, integrate the local business community, promote healthy life styles, and increase awareness of Krakow as a good place to live. The Jasiek Mela Foundation, Beyond Horizons, that provides aid to amputees was selected as a partner. The initial project team consisted of UBS, Radisson Blu Hotel, the City of Krakow, and Beyond Horizons Foundation representatives. The work started in January, and the run date was scheduled on September 16, 2012.

“A charity initiative of this size and scope needed reliable and proactive partners. Together with Luxoft UBS has built a successful partnership in business, therefore I was certain we could achieve great results also for a good cause”
- explains Antony Roberts-York, CEO of UBS Poland Service Centre.

Initially, Luxoft was invited by UBS to join the Krakow Business Run as a sponsor. We soon realized that we could go beyond supporting the run financially by joining the organizers with Luxoft resources, creativity, and experience. That’s why in March Luxoft joined the project team as one of the organizers, providing the project with our skill and experience in the use of social media, building marketing strategy, and soliciting additional sponsors.
Te run was open to teams of five, representing local companies, whose task was to complete a 5x3,8km relay around Old Town of Krakow. The initial goal was to attract 150 teams to the event. For those who wanted to prepare for this run, free training sessions were organized every day in different places all over the city, so anyone who wanted to join could find a suitable time and place to practice under the supervision of professional trainers. When we launched the marketing plan, the buzz and interest in the run went viral. As a result, what seemed to be a stretch goal in the beginning was greatly exceeded. We attracted over 1000 runners on the start line, representing over 100 companies from Krakow. In addition, we raised the necessary monies to buy an artificial limb for Justyna Topa, a beneficiary of the Beyond Horizons Foundation.
The run also attracted the local community; over 4000 spectators watched it at the main market square and along the route. Lastly, we achieved our goals of promoting a healthy lifestyle and increasing awareness of Krakow as a great place to live and work. The event got over 200 publications in the media including, TV, radio, press, and internet.

Justyna Topa commented on the event:
“It is hard to express my profound gratitude towards anyone who got involved in the organization of this event, to anyone who supported it financially. But it is even harder to really and appropriately thank all the runners who are there right now. Your effort, sacrifice, and generosity are something really precious, something for which I am immensely grateful, and something I will never ever forget. I wish I could stand in front of each of you and, looking straight into your eyes, say Thank You!”
We are proud that Luxoft could play an active role in organizing and supporting the Krakow Business Run 2012. We look forward organizing the event in 2013, expanding it to other cities in Poland, and pursuing other ambitious goals for the greater good of the community with the outstanding organizing teams from UBS, Radisson, and the Beyond Horizons Foundation.

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