We invested 1.7 million euros in programmes to complement and, in some cases, build on the public services offered in the countries where we operate. The Group has also been focusing on encouraging healthier lifestyles and on designing health prevention initiatives.
The “SOS Dentist” programme aims at helping employees with oral health problems and who do not have the financial capacity to bear the total costs of their dental treatments. The oral health of our employees’ children is also a priority and that’s why we created the “SOS Junior Dentist” programme, launched in 2016.
The Mais Vida (More Life) programme, in partnership with the Champalimaud Foundation and the Portuguese Red Cross, supports employees and their direct family members with cancer by offering different types of support, such as second opinion consultations, transport for treatments, help at home and psychological support. Forty-two people have benefited from this programme.
We offer psychology consultations to the children of employees up to the age of 18 who are still part of the household under the Programa Psicologia Infantil e Juvenil (Child and Youth Psychology Programme), by offering specialised professional follow-up appointments. In 2019, we supported 198 children and/or young people.
The Grupo Lusíadas Saúde protocol enables our employees (including those who are retired) and their direct family members (spouses, children and parents) to have access to discounts when consulting a specialist and on complementary diagnostic tests.
Through the Razem Zadbajmy o Zdrowie (Let’s Take Care of our Health Together) programme, employees were given the opportunity to have free check-ups and screenings, follow an educational programme and participate in sports activities. Free medical examinations are also available, such as a thyroid or testicular ultrasound. In 2019, 3,671 employees benefited from this programme.
The Mali Bohaterowie (Little Heroes) programme helps the children of employees suffering from serious health problems or who have a disability, by providing financial aid for purchasing medicines, medical services, personal care products and rehabilitation equipment and also for treatments at rehabilitation centres. The programme has helped 188 children of employees.
Besides support for sports activities, employees also have access to over 4,000 gyms and sports facilities throughout the country, through the Karta Multisport (Multisport Card), a pre-paid card used by more than 13 thousand employees in 2019.
In addition to the family support programmes, an ongoing study is being conducted on the reality in Portugal and Poland to identify employee needs and the Group’s most effective response in terms of education. In 2019, we invested over 1.8 million euros in this pillar.
The “Scholarship” programme is for employees and their children who, despite not having the financial means, wish to enrol or re-enrol in higher education. In 2019, the programme was extended to include Master’s scholarships.
The “Back to School” programme brings together a set of measures to support the families of our employees, most notably school kits, offered to children starting primary school, discounts on school materials for children up to 12 years of age, and textbooks that are distributed free of charge to large low-income families. 1,150 children who began their academic journey benefited from this support and more than 15 thousand discount vouchers for school material were offered.
Operating for almost a decade, the Holiday Camps for children between the ages of 6 and 17 promote activities related to sport, education, art and culture, on a residential and non-residential basis. Besides the international holiday camp and the Madeira holiday camp, in 2019 a Volunteering Holiday Camp was held, a special project that allowed the children of employees to actively take part in the construction of a house for an underprivileged family and in other charity activities, such as beach clean ups, activities with the elderly and the disabled, among other activities.
Also of note is the Aprende e Evoluir (Learn and Grow) programme which, since 2007 and currently under the state-run Qualifica (Qualify) programme, allows our employees to complete the 9th or 12th grade while working, thus helping to increase their self-worth and contributing to their personal and professional development. Until 2019, more than 2,700 employees continued their education.
In Poland, the Wakacje z Biedronką/Hebe (Holidays with Biedronka/Hebe) programme includes various activities and endeavours to develop creativity and broaden the interests of children between the ages of 8 and 13. For employees’ children between the ages of 14 and 17, we have developed the Hello Biedronka/Hebe programme, during which the participants attend an English course with native English-speaking teachers. More than 1,260 children benefited from these holiday camps.
We made a financial contribution towards the cost of school books for children of employees with economic difficulties through the “To School with Biedronka” programme. In 2019, we offered pre-paid cards to 6,812 children.
Creating programmes that improve the personal and family well-being of our employees is very important to the Group. With an investment of 16.5 million euros in 2019, we implemented the following initiatives:
- The Social Emergency Fund, established since 2011, which aims at helping employees with proven financial difficulties or those who are living in an at-risk social or family situation. The work carried out with our employees and their families is supported by social workers who ensure an effective, fast and professional response. In 2019, we supported 971 employees, corresponding to a total investment of more than 930 thousand euros.
- A social study, in Portugal, on domestic violence, where an action plan was designed to meet the needs of our people who are victims of domestic violence, based on our best practices.
- In Poland, and through the Możesz Liczyć na Biedronką (You can Count on Biedronka) programme, we support employees who are in financial difficulties or who have been affected by natural disasters, such as fires and floods. In 2019, we supported more than 5,100 employees.
We have also implemented several initiatives to celebrate important moments in the lives our employees and their families, in Portugal and Poland, in particular Christmas and International Children’s Day, when we offer presents to our employees’ children. And, as we want to contribute towards the first few months in the life of our employees’ children, we also offer Baby Kits.
Aware that sharing everything we do for our people and their families is a priority, we communicate with all levels of the organisation to inform, engage and motivate our employees.