Kyndryl Launches Partnership with Global Nonprofit Echoing Green, Empowering BIPOC Entrepreneurship and Innovation
Feb. 15, 2022
Today Kyndryl, the world's largest IT infrastructure services provider, is championing its employees’ commitment to building a purpose-driven, people-centric society and expressing the values of empathy, devotion, and restlessness through community engagement.
In keeping with those values Kyndryl has gone live with a new volunteerism platform, DEED, that will enable its growing 88,728 employee base opportunities to easily engage charitable institutions they feel passionate about. Kyndryl’s world-class professionals care deeply about their communities and have a passion to volunteer across the 60+ countries they reside in. The world’s leading enterprises trust Kyndryls to design, build, manage, and modernize the vital technology systems the world relies on every day. Our teams partner with customers to ensure the processes people and businesses depend on run smoothly and securely – from airline travel to mortgage payment processing, to online retail deliveries. We bring that same ingenuity to the social and environmental issues we feel most passionate about.
As part of this effort, Kyndryl’s first focus area will be on BIPOC entrepreneurship through a partnership with Echoing Green, a global nonprofit focused on identifying and investing in early-stage social entrepreneurs. Kyndryl's contributions will be spread across Echoing Green's fellowship programs, including its follow-on funding program which provides grants to Fellows performing racial justice work around the world.
To share more on the work Kyndryls are doing, here is a conversation with Utaukwa Allen, VP CSR and ESG at Kyndryl, Cheryl Dorsey, President of Echoing Green, and Deevee Kashi, social entrepreneur and CEO of Deed regarding what is in store:
What is significant about today's news?
Allen: Echoing Green and Deed are the organization's first two global CSR and ESG partners since launching as a public company in November 2021. With a focus on employee empowerment and social entrepreneurship, Kyndryl is shaping its culture, placing customers, community, and the environment at its core.
Kashi: Kyndryl is also the largest global corporate partner to date utilizing the Deed platform. Its application is a sophisticated approach towards corporate giving and volunteer engagement.
Allen: And we are excited to continue to progress this collaboration. In fact, later this year, we have plans to unveil new technology designed to unlock even more opportunities for our employees, driving passion projects and allowing them to recruit their colleagues to join them in doing good.
Tell us more about Echoing Green?
Dorsey: Echoing Green is the leading source for finding social innovators – leaders with the boldest ideas for change. We find them as early as possible on their journey and then fund, support, and connect them. Through our fellowship, we provide seed funding and leadership development for our community of almost 1,000 social innovators, including first lady Michelle Obama and the founders of organizations like Teach For America and One Acre Fund.
Today we are thrilled to welcome Kyndryl into our family of supporters. Through our work to support entrepreneurs and communities of color globally, Kyndryl's backing advances our goals to launch and scale 500 social enterprises advancing racial equity. It will also help us build new pathways to social entrepreneurship through programs and trainings offered to more than 5,000 emerging leaders.
When I think about the role of corporate citizenship today, the timing is right for corporations to make significant and authentic investments in strengthening our communities. Social innovators need an ecosystem of bold partners, like Kyndryl, willing to support them and provide them with the space to grow and thrive.
Allen: This partnership is just the start and will continue to grow along with our business. The transformational leaders at Echoing Green are working on the front lines of solving the biggest problems across issue areas and geographies – something that resonates with Kyndryl employees.
How will the integration of the Deed platform strengthen Kyndryl’s CSR and ESG mission?
Kashi: Deed was built on the belief that CSR/ESG should be centered around a company’s most valuable resource: its employees. What makes Kyndryl’s approach so interesting is how they are seeking to be inclusive in their execution of CSR and ESG; giving employees a voice in establishing their strategy but then also supporting their ideas with time, resources and money.
What excites you about what's next for Kyndryl?
Allen: As a growing 'start-up' with extraordinary talent from over 60 countries, Kyndryl is powered by employees committed to pushing purposeful and lasting impact forward. From their contributions advancing the vital systems that our customers depend on to championing social change and entrepreneurship within Kyndryl and their community, Kyndryls are at the heart of progress in every sense of the way.
Our CSR and ESG work is just beginning, but as a technology company, we understand the impact innovation has when scaled across communities and geographies. We look forward to championing such innovators and advancing a sustainable and inclusive future for all communities worldwide.