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Corporate social responsibility

Social and cultural commitments at Murtfeldt


Murtfeldt has been supporting voluntary and non-profit projects for many years. This support benefits both children and adults, the sick and the healthy, as well as the environment, and cultural institutions and events.

The following examples are only a small selection of the many projects and activities that we support or have previously supported. They all have one thing in common. For us, it’s about being able to achieve as much as we can with our commitment but also to be as hands on as possible. We believe that this is best achieved through direct connections and involvement by Murtfeldt employees who, for example, act as tournament organisers, club coaches, coordinators of aid projects, and sponsorship collectors through their own sporting activities.


Murtfeldt attaches great importance to regional projects. But if a well construction in Mali is being supported by one of our colleagues or someone has a personal connection there and is following the development of the project, then supporting that is just as important and valuable as supporting activities on our own doorstep.

Cultural projects

Matinees by the Dortmund Mozart Society



Alongside keeping the works of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart alive, the aim of the Dortmund Mozart Society is to support and present young musicians of the highest calibre. Its work is geared towards internationally recognised excellence. The society awards scholarships and/or concert engagements.
More than 200 Mozart Matinees and 180 chamber concerts have been performed since 1956. To date, the Dortmund Mozart Society has supported more than 120 young scholarship holders with development opportunities, helping to make their journey into the tough music business that little bit easier.
Murtfeldt supports this dedicated work by regularly placing advertisements in concert preview guides and programmes.


Dortmund Concert Hall


The Dortmund Concert Hall offers a diverse, top-class programme of events. It is one of 21 members of the European Concert Hall Organisation, and is among the best concert halls in Europe.

Murtfeldt has supported the Dortmund Concert Hall for many years to help ensure that it continues to enrich cultural life in Dortmund and Westphalia. As an ambassador of the Dortmund Concert Hall, Murtfeldt, represented by Detlev Höhner, supports this Dortmund institution both financially and in terms of ideas. His donation, for example, makes a top-class “ambassador concert” possible every season.


50 years Domicil in Dortmund


The Domicil is a venue for jazz and contemporary music in Dortmund and perfectly combines music and culture, community involvement, gastronomy and architecture.


The club has made a name for itself as an event organiser nationwide since 1969, first with its programme at the legendary Kellerclub at Leopoldstraße 60 in the north of Dortmund, then from 2005 at its new location in the converted UFA studio cinema in the historic and centrally located Westfalenhaus on Hansastraße.


In March 2019, the Domicil celebrated 50 years of cultural activities. As a silver sponsor of the club, Murtfeldt worked behind the scenes to ensure that this impressive birthday could be celebrated over the course of the year with guest appearances by renowned artists.


Other cultural projects supported by Murtfeldt (a selection)


  • Cultural benefactor for Dortmund Theatre
  • NRW Junior Ballet
  • Theater- und Konzertfreunde e.V. theatre society
  • Klangvokal music festival
  • 17th Westphalian van Bremen Piano Competition
  • “Musik macht stark” schools music concert
  • Zonta Club Dortmund women's charity

Social projects

In 2017, Anne Höhner interviewed Hans-Werner Neske, Managing Director of the Herman van Veen Foundation Germany, about the foundation's background and aims. She gained some interesting insights into how important supporters like Murtfeldt Kunststoffe are.


AHö: Who is behind the foundation?


HWN: The Herman van Veen Foundation in Germany is backed by Herman van Veen himself, who gave the foundation its name, and myself as co-founder and chair. Herman has always been very keen on supporting children and young people all over the world. He joined UNICEF to stand up for children's rights when he was just 19 years old. In 1989, he even planted a symbolic “tree of life” in front the UN headquarters in New York together with his friend Sir Peter Ustinov in recognition of these rights, to mark the signing of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.


 AHö: How did the Dutch Herman van Veen Foundation come into being?


HWN: The Dutch foundation was founded by Herman van Veen before the German one was created. A 12-year-old girl with a life expectancy of only 3 years called Herman. He then visited the sick child and found a girl who could only be kept alive by an enormous machine. Her deepest wish was to be able to go out into nature one last time and enjoy a few days' holiday. Herman spoke to doctors and professors and after 6 years managed to open a special house in Holland. The idea was to give severely disabled children and their parents the opportunity to spend 3 weeks together on holiday, to be creative and to have a wonderful time. The sick girl was by then 18 years old and the first guest in this house. She died of her illness on her first night there.


 AHö: When and why was the German foundation then set up by the two of you?


HWN: I have always greatly admired Herman van Veen and his approach to life. I attended lots of his events for that reason. On one of my many visits to one of his performances, I was lucky enough to meet him in person. A wonderful friendship quickly developed after our meeting, as well as the idea of founding the German Herman van Veen Foundation together. We then managed to make this a reality in 2003.


 AHö: What does the foundation do exactly?


HWN: The aim of our foundation is to accompany children and young people worldwide in their development and to support them in terms of their talents and gifts. We pay special attention to supporting children and young people with physical, mental or psychosocial disabilities.


AHö: Why are you so committed to the foundation and what does your role involve?


HWN: Herman is known for saying, "Children have rights, parents have duties. It's because adults don't fulfil their duties that so many children have to suffer.” I've always believed in this message and been a fan of Herman van Veen as a person. It is because of this that supporting the Foundation with its great work and giving disadvantaged children their own personal happiness in life matters a great deal to me. My main role at the foundation is to foster contact with ambassadors and sponsors. I'm also responsible for its organisation.


AHö: How long has Murtfeldt been supporting the foundation?


HWN: We've been able to completely count on Murtfeldt for our projects, events and activities since 2009. I'm very proud to have found Murtfeldt as a partner we can always count on whenever there are children in need.


AHö: What kind of projects have already been realised thanks to Murtfeldt’s support?


HWN: We have been able to carry out lots of projects thanks to Murtfeldt’s help. I'd like to share the following two examples with you to give you an idea of these projects and to give you some insight into our work. Firstly, we were able to build a "football cage" on the grounds of a special school belonging to the Neukirchener Erziehungsverein organisation. This makes it possible to accommodate the pupils' enormous love of movement, as they are unable to be schooled in a regular classroom setting due to their psychosocial backgrounds. The children desperately need this outlet. The second project involves the creation of 28 residential units on the island of Sylt for children suffering from cancer and their family members. The aim here is to support the children's rehabilitation and to stabilise families as a whole in a social sense. This makes it possible to take the dependency of the affected child into account, while at the same time strengthening their self-help potential and largely avoiding any late effects.


AHö: What projects are currently being planned with Murtfeldt?


HWN: We have two major projects that can be put into practice with Murtfeldt’s help. One is a sailing project for severely disabled children, where they get the chance to go on a trip on Lake IJssel once a year. This outlet and feeling of freedom is something very special for the children. The second project is about helping Sali, a 13-year-old refugee child, to become mobile for the first time in her life with the help of an electric wheelchair. This will finally make it possible for her to go school.


AHö: Thank you so much for taking part in this interview and for all your time. I wish you every ongoing success in your invaluable work!


Franconian bee project


The community project "Bienenland Frankenland" is an outreach project of the beekeepers' association Imkerverein Hersbruck e.V. A beekeeping information station with multi-purpose rooms is available for use under the motto “Come and join in - beekeeping at Hut Anger. Young beekeepers have full use of the facilities without having to make an investment. The multi-purpose building offers a hygiene room (with honey extractor), a utility room (working wax, own wax processes, organic wax) and a workshop (preparing treatment agents, building frames and bee boxes). This project gives people without large gardens the opportunity to keep their own bee colonies and use the association's facilities. A generous meadow area of 60,000 square metres can be used by young beekeepers as a temporary site for their own colonies or for colonies leased from the association. This too lowers the access threshold to beekeeping for those with an interest in it. And everything is possible without disturbing the surrounding environment. Further information is also provided by an educational bee trail that ends at the beekeeping station.


Other social projects and institutions supported by Murtfeldt (a selection)


  • Social Day
  • Project partnership between the city of Dortmund and Dabola (Guinea)

Sports projects

 


Murtfeldt is equally keen to establish personal contacts when it comes to sports projects, so that as much help as possible reaches those taking part. And this support happens pretty quickly and without the need for lots of paperwork. Many of the projects supported are recurring activities.


Murtfeldt supports successful U20 triathlete Luca Fahrenson


In 2012, Luca Fahrenson took part in his first triathlon in Oelde, Westphalia. 2021 will see Luca become one of the youngest participants in the 2021 European Triathlon Championships in Kitzbühel. He successfully qualified three weeks ago to take part in the junior category and is eagerly awaiting the start. 90 participants will start in his category, among them five Germans. As many as 1500 triathletes have attempted to qualify for the event.


Murtfeldt got to know the young athlete in 2019 when he spontaneously asked if Murtfeldt would support him a little with sportswear. The then 16-year-old was already living at the Essen Residential School for Sport and Dance and was attending a regular school off-site. Thanks to his sporting commitment, he enjoyed considerable freedom and was often given time off for competitions.


Read more here


Indoor Meeting Dortmund


The Indoor Meeting Dortmund is an indoor athletics meet in Germany that was held annually at the Helmut-Körnig-Halle venue in Dortmund between 1995 and 2004. In 2018, after a 14-year break, a new version of the event took place and more than 2000 spectators created a fantastic atmosphere and saw top international athletics. In 2019, 3120 spectators came to cheer on the 217 athletes from 25 nations.
Murtfeldt will once again be a "silver partner" in 2020 and is looking forward to a top event with first-class athletes and exciting disciplines. This will be the first time that the event is held at the newly modernised Helmut-Körnig-Halle venue.





Murtfeldt Triathlon


Several Murtfeldt teams have been competing in the Westphalia Triathlon since 2015, which has now become the PSD Bank Triathlon. The annual sporting event, which takes place alternately in Fredenbaum Park and at Phonixsee Lake, is now seen by many as an event to share with colleagues, as well as an individual fitness challenge. Especially as most Murtfeldt participants usually take part in the triathlon as part of a relay team: three colleagues at a time split the three disciplines of swimming (750 m), cycling (20 km) and running (5 km). But the number of individual starters is increasing and some like to spend the time between competitions training together with the TriGekkos, the Dortmund triathlon club.


As well as paying the entry fee for each Murtfeldt starter and providing the sportswear for the triathlon, the company also supports a social project every year. Every metre swum, ran and cycled is rewarded. In 2018, the 16 relay teams at the start earned 3,000 euros this way, which were donated to the Schiffsjoje Day Care Centre in Dortmund. This inclusive day-care centre in the north of Dortmund is investing the money in renovations to the facility and in a new kitchen.





“Kinder kicken für Kinder“ children's football event


In the black and yellow city of Dortmund, a lot, but not everything, revolves around the football pros of Borussia Dortmund 09. Each year on Whitsun weekend, this becomes very apparent as part of a wonderful tradition. This is when young amateurs take to the pitch at the international children's and youth football tournament “Kinder kicken für Kinder” (Kids Kick for Kids).

Lots of renowned clubs, including VFB Stuttgart, Hamburger SV, 1. FC Köln, and FC Bayern München, as well as international teams from Denmark, Sweden and the Czech Republic, have accepted the invitation of the tournament organisers, SC Husen-Kurl 1919/1928 and SUS Kaiserau, and have given their best in spirited matches.


This remarkable lighthouse project, which does outstanding work that goes beyond normal club life, has been going for 16 years. It shows what can be achieved when lots of different people pull together. It’s a tradition that the proceeds of the tournament go to a charitable cause, such as the BVB foundation "leuchte auf" or the association "Kinderlachen".





Get Racing student society


Get Racing is the Formula Student Team of the TU Dortmund University, which brings together students who have petrol in their blood. Every year, the team designs and builds a single-seater racing car that is raced at various Formula Student events in Europe.

Because Murtfeldt is keen to see future engineers develop their skills through hands-on experience, Murtfeldt has supported the team as a sponsor since 2016. In 2017, this collaboration grew stronger and Murtfeldt has been the team's exclusive sponsor ever since.


Murtfeldt’s commitment made it possible to successfully build a Formula Student racing car during the 2018 season. Collaboration and support take many forms, such as:


Expertise
The automotive industry is using more and more plastic components. Formula Student is following the same path. As a Formula Student car is a one-off construction, many components are manufactured by means of rapid prototyping. With the help of Murtfeldt’s expertise, the Get Racing team are able to incorporate the latest manufacturing processes into the design of their racing car. This is also a chance for students to get further training alongside their studies.


Components
A lot of the racing car's components have to be sourced directly from a racing supplier. If Murtfeldt is unable to produce the parts itself, the company makes it possible to buy expensive precision parts.


Manufacturing
Murtfeldt also supports the Get Racing team as a manufacturing partner. From 3D printing and SLS to CNC aluminium parts, Murtfeldt produces a number of components specifically for the racing car.





Other sports projects supported by Murtfeldt (a selection)


  • Swim Race Dortmund

Local projects

A successful company shouldn't just be about being profitable and achieving financial gains. Especially in this day and age, it's also important that we engage in meaningful activities, get involved and take on social responsibility. As a good neighbour, and especially in a local setting, it's important to not just use the location, but to participate in the active shaping of the environment – to give something back.
As in other areas, when it comes to local aid campaigns and sponsorships, we act through personal contacts to try and ensure that as much of our help as possible actually reaches those in need, and that this happens pretty quickly and without a lot of paperwork.


Murtfeldt Cup


It all started back in 2007: a small, committed group from FC Merkur 07 put a spontaneous idea into practice and invited some local clubs to a club tournament at the training ground on Lortzingplatz during the summer break. What started with six teams per age group and went under the name of "Nordstadtturnier" (North City Tournament) grew steadily year after year with more clubs and associations joining from the wider area.

In 2011, FC Merkur 07 succeeded in securing Murtfeldt Kunststoffe as a sponsor. The now very popular tournament was given the name Murtfeldt Cup and Murtfeldt provided a generous financial contribution to ensure prizes as well as catering for the players and spectators, which ranged from a fruit bar and classic cake stand to an Asian-inspired barbecue.
But it is more than just the financial contribution that makes this a great event; it's also down to the active support of the organisers and many of the players' parents. The Murtfeldt Cup was now making such a great name for itself with clubs that FC Merkur 07 was able to welcome 38 teams, covering junior age groups E to D, to the 7th Murtfeldt Cup in 2019. Teams come from as far away as Greven and Cologne to take part in this now much loved tradition.





500 kg of bottle caps for children's and young people's hospice in Unna


In 2014, a lady from Kamen came up with the idea of collecting bottle caps and having them melted down, so she could donate the proceeds and, at the same time, make the city a little cleaner. Initially, this campaign only covered the Kamen area. But it soon gained momentum, and numerous sports clubs, beverage stores and households in Unna, Dortmund and Holzwickede got involved. In 2017, almost 12 tonnes of bottle caps were collected with proceeds amounting to 1,500 euros.
Murtfeldt joined this campaign in September 2017 and diligently collected bottle caps in our canteen. In addition to the canteen bottle caps, people also brought in collections from home and their local sports clubs. A total of 500 kg came together, and this was taken to a large collection container at the Döring recycling centre in Unna in February 2020. As this is a privately organised and voluntary campaign, the entire proceeds went to the Children's and Youth Hospice in Unna.


Dortmunder Tafel food bank


Time and again, perfectly good food is thrown away as it can no longer be sold for a variety of reasons. The food bank collects this food to pass it on to those in need.
More than 400 volunteers regularly help out at the Dortmunder Tafel to collect between 80,000 and 100,000 kg of food every week and distribute it to around 14,000 people.


Driving service
In order to pass on the food to those in need, it has to be collected first. The drivers head out every day in eight refrigerated vehicles to deliver the food to the food bank's headquarters. Once the food has been sorted there, the drivers transport the goods to the individual branches for distribution. There are also two vehicles just for waste disposal.


Murtfeldt has contributed twice towards the purchase of new refrigerated trucks to support this important work and ensure smooth logistics.




Other local projects supported by Murtfeldt


  • Help and Hope children’s charity
  • Klangvokal music festival
  • DortBunt community festival

Intercultural aid projects

In 1989, the German Nepra e. V. organisation set up its first small leprosy station in Nepal. Initially, this focused on the medical care of those affected by leprosy ( administering medication and treating wounds). But it soon became clear that this alone would do little to alleviate the suffering of those affected. They had to return to the streets after their treatment, because without a chance to work, begging was the only way for these severely socially discriminated people to make a living.

So, a first workshop was set up at the small leprosy station to offer the affected individuals employment and thereby the chance to earn a small income. To start with, the daily dressing material for the treatment of wounds was spun and woven by the patients themselves. Other fabrics were later added, then a batik workshop and a dressmakers. The products were initially sold at local markets, but were soon being distributed to fair-trade retailers in Germany via the fair-trade importer AKAR. These were willing to pay higher prices and also supported the workshops’ development into a fair trade business through donations.


The small leprosy station has now become a large, multi-faceted leprosy rehabilitation project, which Nepra e.V. handed over to the Nepalese NGO New SADLE in 2000. The project's main site is located in Kapan, in the hills on the north-eastern edge of Kathmandu/ Nepal. Disabled and able-bodied people learn and work together in the project's five workshops. This helps to break down prejudices and promotes the social integration of those affected. On top of that, there are other social benefits offered, such as medical care and schooling for the children. As is the case in workshops for disabled people in Germany, the proceeds from the sale of goods do not cover all project costs and disabled employees are often not able to earn 100% of their income themselves. For this reason, Nepra e. V. continues to support the project with monthly contributions.


Murtfeldt’s commitment
Murtfeldt’s relationship with New SADLE began in autumn 2014. An employee's trip to Nepal and the subsequent stories she told sparked our interest in the region and the people who live there. Then, when an earthquake hit Nepal in February 2015, claiming the lives of many people and causing untold misery to even more, it quickly became clear that Murtfeldt would do what it could to help. As Murtfeldt already had well-established contacts with New SADLE and the German supporting association Nepra e. V., our support directly benefited this organisation.

Murtfeldt Kunststoffe has been one of Nepra's partners since the summer of 2018. We support them in making New SADLE’s products future-proof. By employing the product designer Benu, whose salary is fully covered by Murtfeldt, we hope that distinctive products designed by Benu and sold by New SADLE in Europe will be an important step on the way to ensuring that the New SADLE workshops become independent of donations. Because attractive product designs mean more sales, which in turn leads to more self-sufficiency.

In autumn 2019, we will also get to enjoy the beautiful things made by the people in the New SADLE workshops for the first time. Before ordering our goods, we got to meet Benu and Hari, head of the workshops. Both were in Germany in spring 2019 and took time to stop by Murtfeldt in Dortmund.





The Neven Subotic Foundation


Murtfeldt supports well building projects in Northern Ethiopia’s Tigray region.


As part of a partner company's anniversary celebrations, Murtfeldt Kunststoffe's managing directors, Detlev Höhner and Andreas Balla, presented a donation cheque to support the Neven Subotic Foundation.
This support enables the Dortmund-based foundation to build further wells in the north of Ethiopia, not only to provide the people living there with regular access to water, but also to education and independence.


The Neven Subotic Foundation thanked the company for its donation with a short video, which also provided information about the foundation's activities in Ethiopia.





Orienthelfer e.V. refugee charity



Theorganisation Orienthelfer e.V.provides on-the-spot help for Syrian refugees and is recognised as a non-profit organisation. Founded by Munich cabaret artist, author and actor Christian “Fonsi” Springer, Orienthelfer volunteers have been organising aid for Syrian refugees in Lebanon, Jordan, Egypt and inside Syria since 2011.


The services provided by Orienthelfer e.V. range from direct financial support for initial needs, to heating materials, financing of operations and emergency medical transports, to organising and financing apprenticeships for Syrian girls. Orienthelfer e.V. is also involved with the setting up of schools and refugee camps and organises the transport of ambulances and fire engines to Syria. The organisation's ultimate goal is sustainability, helping people to help themselves, directly and quickly; administrative costs are currently less than 10 %. Targeted use of donations is guaranteed.


Murtfeldt has supported the association several times by converting kilometres run, swum or cycled at sporting events into ready cash and donating this to the organisation.