Wednesday 24 January 2018

FAOS

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10 years of

Taking action at the local level

TITAN’s social policy is based on supporting community groups, NGOs and other key stakeholders and sharing know-how, human and technical resources instead of offering only financial assistance.

This entails careful selection of social groups and NGOs that are best–suited to maximize their own effectiveness through this form of “all-inclusive” support. It also calls for concentration on those areas where TITAN has acquired, over the years, relevant experience and expertise, namely: 

  • Accident prevention 
  • Environmental sustainability 
  • Education

Considering that building safety awareness at early stages is an opportunity to cultivate an accident prevention mentality which will last an entire lifetime, the “Accident Prevention at School - FAOS” Program was launched in 2000 by TITAN as a local partnership initiative.

The idea was introduced at a public meeting attended by a Government Minister, local authorities, parent’s associations, the press etc. The idea caught on quickly, especially among school teachers, who had at last found members of the community willing to listen to their problems, frustrations. Built on this new-found understanding and mutual trust a FAOS goals were the following:

  1. Engage and expand collective action with volunteers from both public and local authorities and local companies.
  2. Introduce in volunteering schools. The idea to cooperate with experts and undertake inspections related to possible dangerous defects or potential causes of accidents.
  3. Develop experienced task forces among teachers to act as training facilitators inside schools.
  4. Motivate parents’ associations and society at large to support the development of a “preventing accidents mentality”.
  5. Build a sustainable partnership at local level that could be transferred and re-produced in other communities and regions.

The program was presented as an example of good practice at the U.N. Global Compact International Learning Forum in Bello Horizonte in 2004 for meeting both the need to take joint action and for applying the Global Compact Principles in respect to human rights.

It was also evaluated in 2006 by the European Agency for Safety and Health at Work as one of the 17 best practices in promoting the safety and health of young people.

A multitude of actions was undertaken over the ten-year period such as inspecting and eliminating unsafe conditions at schools, recording and analyzing the root causes of school accidents, building awareness and training school headmasters and teachers organizing first aid workshops as well as safety and health campaigns for the families and the general public. As a result the schools that were part of the FAOS initiative recorded a 50-70% reduction in school accidents over the first 6-year period of implementation.

In 2005 a new effort to share lessons learnt through this endeavor was launched with public schools in the area of Western Thessaloniki where TITAN has also operations. Moreover, the sharing of experience and best practices within the sphere of TITAN’s influence helped to disseminate the FAOS partnership concept in other countries like F.Y.R.O.M. and Serbia where similar programs were launched the last few years.

Reviewing the effectiveness of this initiative in respect to all five goals set initially an updated action plan was developed in 2010 to meet more effectively all of them and particularly engaging more actively the education community in recording and monitoring safety performance indicators like incidents and benefit from their analysis.

1 “FAOS” in Homer’s language meant “light” but it also combines the initials of the Greek words for “Care”, “Education”, “Organization” and “Cooperation”.

TITAN Group pledges

Aligned with TITAN Group Values and Code of Conduct are the following pledges and international standards :

  • U.N. Global Compact
  • AA1000 Accountability Principles Standard
  • ISO 14001: 2004 Enviromental Management System Certification
  • OHSAS 18001
  • SA 8000 Social Accountability
  • GRI (reporting guidelines)
  • WBCSD/CSI (sectoral initiative)
  • E.U. Business Alliance for CSR (European initiative)

All the above are closely related to ISO 26000 CSR principles and particularly the following:

  • Accountability
  • Transparency
  • Ethical behavior
  • Respect for stakeholder interests
  • Respect for the rule of law
  • Respect for international norms and behavior
  • Respect for human rights