Friedhelm Loh Group employees and owner donate €200,000 for good causes

2019-05-09. Giving a little hope to people in need is what motivates the employees of the Friedhelm Loh Group to make their traditional annual donation. In 2018, together with owner Professor Friedhelm Loh, they collected €200,000 to help regional non-profit institutions as well as Médecins sans Frontières for its work in Yemen.

Even little things can make a big difference, that’s long been the belief of the Friedhelm Loh Group’s staff. Each year, they make a yearly donation to give people in need a chance. In 2018, the many small contributions (which were then matched by a contribution from owner Professor Friedhelm Loh) again added up to something big. In all, €200,000 was collected for good causes. The money collected will help twelve regional social institutions. In addition, the efforts of the Médecins sans Frontières in Yemen were also rewarded. “It is reassuring that we, as a strong community, can do without in order to give needy people a chance,” said Professor Loh, as he thanked his employees for their commendable willingness to help.

Help with illness and social distress

Part of the annual donation went to the “v. Bodelschwinghsche Stiftungen Bethel”, a foundation based in Bielefeld. This charitable church institution supports sick, disabled and socially disadvantaged people with a variety of services in such areas as therapy, care or rehabilitation. “With the generous help from the Friedhelm Loh Group, we are delighted that we will be able to finance our ‘Seven Days – Seven Senses’ project for 2019 and 2020,” added Birgit Kirchner, who looks after donations at the foundation. Its projects include a variety of smaller events such as wellness days and creative projects, run for people with disabilities and visitors of all generations in and around Bielefeld in collaboration with external partners. The individual events, which are oriented towards the interests of people who need a great deal of support, offer a variety of sensory experiences including the use of singing bowls and horse-riding in order to create meeting places and provide surprises, happiness and a higher quality of life.

Living in safety and with dignity

A donation was also made to the SOS-Kinderdorf (Children's Village) in Gera, where Stahlo is located. Since 1993, this youth welfare service has been providing both in-patient and out-patient services for disadvantaged young people, women and families, giving them a caring and sheltered environment. The money will be used to renovate the mother-and-child house, which has been offering continuous care and above all security and warmth to young mothers in situations seemingly without prospects since the early 1990s. “Thank you very much indeed for this great support. With your donation, we will be able to perform the first renovation work on our mother-and-child house”, says Nina Wunderlich, Marketing Coordinator of the SOS Children’s Village in Gera. The renovation, which is long overdue, will include the roof, as well as the bathrooms and the living quarters.

Emergency medical aid on site

The Group’s employees have also given a little hope with their devotions even outside Germany: The Republic of Yemen is one of the world’s poorest countries. For four years, civil war has been raging, two million people have been displaced and more than 20 million inhabitants require relief. The Friedhelm Loh Group is therefore supporting the work of Médecins sans Frontières in Yemen with its annual donation. This humanitarian medical organisation is committed to improving standards of health care in the country. More than half of Yemen’s healthcare facilities have been forced to close down as a result of destruction and staff shortages. Thanks to the money collected by the Group, the international relief organisation will be able to treat victims of war and violence in hospitals and health centres. In addition, more than 2,200 staff in that country are supporting the medical facilities there with material and expert advice. “We are very grateful for the Friedhelm Loh Group’s generous commitment. This will enable us to continue funding medical care in Yemen,” explained Lena Lindner, in charge of corporate donations and cooperation at Médecins sans Frontières.

More than €25 million for good causes

Professor Friedhelm Loh and his employees have been making annual donations for good causes every year since 1961, when Rittal, the largest company in the Friedhelm Loh Group, was founded. Up to now, over €5 million has been collected and donated to charities.

But that’s not all: In 2011, Prof. Friedhelm Loh established the Rittal Foundation to commemorate Rittal’s 50th jubilee, so continuing the family-owned company's long tradition of assuming social responsibility. Endowed with a starting capital of €20 million, the foundation supports charitable institutions near the Group's locations. The main focal points of the foundation's work are in the fields of education, social welfare, integration, culture and science; €1.25 million had been donated for these purposes by the end of 2018. “We all share responsibility for those around us. This also includes looking around and tackling those areas where our fellow human beings depend on help”, Prof. Loh added.