Through our global CSR direction ‘For the Next Generation’, Sony aims to inspire and nurture the dreams of future generations through our expertise and technology. A key part of this vision involves engaging with communities to increase our positive impact and contribution to society.
With a focus on education and wellbeing, Sony runs social contribution initiatives across Europe, harnessing the goodwill and expertise of our employees.
Kids in Focus Programme
The Kids in Focus programme aims to inspire young people through photography.
Driven by leading professional photographers and supported by our digital imaging experts, Sony runs photography workshops for schools and groups of young people who often would not be able to access the equipment or level of expertise by themselves.
During each workshop and under the guidance of our experts, the children take part in a number of practical sessions where they learn how to take great shots, utilising the advanced features of Sony’s cameras. Covering a range of genres such as portrait, action and street style photography, they get the opportunity to understand the different techniques required to excel in each.
Launched in 2018, Sony has worked with schools and youth organisations in the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Austria and Denmark, and we continue to roll out the programme across Europe.
In each country, we partner with local and often award-winning photographers who share their life stories and specialist focus areas to shine a light on the possibilities that can be achieved in this field.
The cameras and equipment we bring along to the workshops are donated to the schools to enable these children and those that follow in later years to develop their skills and ignite their passion.
The Summer Challenge is a pan-European fundraising initiative through which Sony employees compete in teams to run, walk or cycle as many kilometres as they can throughout the months of July and August. As well as being great for the health and wellbeing of our employees, a key aspect of the challenge is its strong charity element.
In 2019, over 600 employees in 88 teams across Europe took part in the challenge. Sony donated €0.15 per km run, walked or cycled during the challenge to one charity chosen by employees. They covered a total of 185,055 kms (more than four times the circumference of the world) during the event, resulting in a donation of €27,800 being made by Sony to this year’s employee-nominated charity: Centrum ter Preventie van Zelfdoding in Belgium.
In addition, each year Sony donates €12,000 to the charities chosen by the top three placed teams in the running and cycling leagues.
As well as bringing health and wellbeing benefits, each year our employees also get the chance to enter the Summer Challenge Photo Competition to win one of our great products. Sending in their favourite photo taken during a run or cycle, they are able to share what inspired them with the whole company.
Winning photo in the Summer Challenge Photo Competition 2017
The popularity and success of the Summer Challenge grows year on year and we’re looking forward to increasing the contribution we make to education and health charities through this initiative in the future.
Sony UK Technology Centre
At Sony UK Technology Centre in Wales, we manufacturer a range of products including professional 4K broadcast cameras. Here we host regular school visits and since 2012 we have opened our doors to over 10,000 children of all ages. In addition, we have regular visits from colleges and universities from across the UK and even welcomed some international students from France and Italy. These visits are aimed at sparking an interest in technology and manufacturing, and to help develop the technological understanding of the innovators of the future.
Of the programmes, the Digital Competency Programme is the most thorough. It is aimed at 9 to 11 year old children. With activities running across two days, it focuses on developing two different sets of skills - creative and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). Day one encourages the former as the children take part in ‘Film in a Day’, using Sony Cameras and green screens to direct and create a short film. The second day is more industry specific, consisting of a presentation, factory tour and a coding workshop.
For schools purely interested in coding, we run Learn 2 Code, a one day coding workshop which covers a variety of different areas and can be tailored to the abilities of the school attending. This is aimed at 8 to 11 year old children.
In addition, we offer general educational visits to the Centre which involve a presentation, factory tour and a guest speaker for older children if applicable. This is offered to all levels of education, from schools to colleges and universities, and gives a general overview of what we do at the Centre.