KPMG and the LIN Center for Community Development (LIN) signed a partnership agreement last week for a three-year strategic corporate social responsibility (CSR) program called “Partnership for a Vibrant Vietnam”, within the framework of the “How Doing Good is Good for Business” conference, co-organized by LIN, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce Vietnam (CanCham), and the French Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Vietnam (CCIFV).

Opening the conference, Mr. Warrick Cleine, Chairman and CEO of KPMG in Vietnam and Cambodia, delivered a keynote address on how and why strategic CSR partnerships can help grow businesses and contribute to Vietnam’s socioeconomic development.

The following high-level discussion on “Strengthening Partnerships and Impact by Building Trust” welcomed diverse and expert panelists from foreign and national governments, business, individual philanthropists, and non-profits.

The conference saw 270 leaders and executives in attendance, from business, non-profits, and government sectors, to inspire partnerships to further contribute to Vietnam’s socioeconomic development. This was the second time the conference has been organized.

“Business Impact & Community Impact - Where to Meet?” discussions invited participants to explore creating shared value (CSV) and CSR models, looking at cross-sector partnerships that build value and sustainable impact, encouraging and enabling businesses to continue to grow sustainably, creating and continuing positive social and environmental impacts, and learning how to strengthen partnerships with key stakeholders.

Within three years, KPMG and LIN aim to engage KPMG’s employees in meaningful work and develop their leadership capacity and understanding of community needs through pro bono (skill volunteering) work with LIN’s non-profit organization partners. They will also build trust, network, access the necessities of life, and reduce inequalities in the community through small grants to non-profit organizations tackling various social issues. Then, they will enhance and develop cross-sector collaboration by assisting businesses to solve complex challenges, steer change, and disrupt sectors and growth.

The workshops were delivered by excellent speakers and facilitators who are senior leaders of international and local SMEs, MNCs, and NGOs/NPOs. Participants left with new understanding, ideas, inspiration, tools, platforms, and networks to optimize their CSR strategies as well as develop partnerships toward long-term transformation in Vietnam.

Ms. Ton Nu Thi Ninh, President of the Ho Chi Minh City Peace & Development Foundation (HPDF) and Vice President of the Vietnam Peace Committee, delivered the closing address, outlining the opportunities and actions required for moving forward together.

Ms. Tran Vu Ngan Giang, Executive Director of LIN, said that through its work LIN recognizes that businesses and community organizations share many values promoting business growth in parallel with community development. However, there are gaps and a lack of trust that challenge the partnerships between these two players. The conference was one of LIN’s key programs to facilitate collaboration between business and non-profits to create sustainable change for Vietnam.

Mr. Cleine also said that “CSR propositions are about pleasing all stakeholders by creating shared values and a balanced approach.”