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Home Depot's Social Responsibility Approach

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Home Depot is the world's largest home improvement retailer operating in 45 states, Canada, Chili and Puerto Rico. Home Depot stores aim to serve both do-it-yourselfers and professional contractors with home improvement superstores carrying between 40,000 and 50,000 different products. Home Depot has also been listed as one of Fortune's most admired specialty retailers for the past six years. In order for companies to succeed in the competitive current marketplace they must consider not only the bottom line and their investors but also their impacts on the community, their employees, and their customers. Home Depot was founded on the idea that treating employees well is an important responsibility. Home Depot believes employees that are well treated will serve the company well. Home Depot was also founded on the importance of corporate community involvement, and is currently focusing its community efforts on at-risk youth, affordable housing, the environment and disaster preparedness, response and relief. As another part of its pursuit of socially responsible behavior Home Depot has explicitly stated values that include taking care of its people, excellent customer service, building strong relationships, entrepreneurial spirit, respect for all people, creating shareholder value, doing the "right" thing and giving back. Home Depot has good coverage of its social responsibility efforts on its web page. In this study, we will be answering questions to expose those values and activities due to business ethics perspective, to lay out Home Depot as a company actively seeking opportunities to contribute to the groups and individuals in its environment- in other words, socially responsible.

Home Depot has identified four areas of focus in its responsibility toward the community including affordable housing, at-risk youth, the environment and disaster preparedness, response and relief.

Affordable Housing

The Home Depot Foundation defines an affordable home as one that people of limited means can afford to own, operate and maintain over the long-term. They firmly believe that building responsibly is a form of stewardship and is simply a smart way to build quality, affordable housing. While the goals of building sustainable, affordable housing is easy to embrace -habitat conservation, better pedestrian environments, improved occupant health and resource efficiency- they are often more difficult to achieve in practice. That is why the Foundation partners with affordable housing developers that take a comprehensive approach to creating healthy communities through building homes responsibly, tree planting and preservation and greenspace development. They have also entered into partnerships with national non profit organizations whose missions align with the Foundation's interests in supporting the production and preservation of affordable, efficient and healthy housing and community trees/urban forestry initiatives that lead to the development of healthier communities.

At-Risk Youth

The Home Depot is committed to helping young people stay focused on school and employment. For that reason, The Home Depot has partnered with YouthBuild, a nonprofit organization, to give youth the skills they will need to flourish. Team Depot volunteers teach young people the importance of working and solving problems together, and the YouthBuild students get the opportunity to help rehabilitate much-needed housing for homeless and low-income families. By sharing its do-it-yourself attitude, The Home Depot helps young people develop a sense of community and self-confidence.

The Home Depot is also very proud to work with KaBOOM to create safe places for children to play. Home Depot associates work with this organization and local community leaders to build safe and accessible playgrounds where children keep fit and healthy, and develop social skills. These playgrounds also create excellent spaces for parents and grandparents to spend time with their children, and for neighbors to build vital social networks within their communities.

Additionally, The Home Depot supports organizations that provide children with a safe place to engage in learning activities and acquire meaningful life skills.

Disaster Relief and Preparedness

When disaster strikes, The Home Depot is among the first organizations on the scene to ensure its customers have the supplies, resources and support they need to rebuild their homes and communities.

Last year's destruction in the Gulf reinforced the importance of disaster preparedness. The Home Depot's dedication to providing customers with the tools they need to minimize the loss of personal items during such devastating events remains a staple in the company's long-standing tradition of safety and preparedness.

The Home Depot takes an integrated approach to its disaster relief efforts through ongoing support of local and national non-profit partners and the mobilization of the Team Depot associate volunteers. In 2005, The Home Depot partnered with organizations such as The Home Depot Foundation, American Red Cross, Salvation Army, Hands On Network, United Way and other community leaders to donate more than $11 million to the long-term recovery and rebuilding of the Gulf region.

Through its associate led and managed volunteer force, Team Depot, the company invested $1.7 million in volunteer activation and management in the Gulf. As an example, in Pass Christian, Miss., The Home Depot engaged more than 500 volunteers to build the community's first permanent structure completed after Katrina - a 6,000 square foot playground, surrounded by dozens of newly planted trees and shrubs, picnic tables and benches in War Memorial Park. In addition, The Home Depot contributed $1.1 million to fund the Hands On Gulf Coast Action Center and Community Tool Bank. This has enabled the daily deployment of 150 volunteers to prepare homes for rebuilding by securing home exteriors, gutting interiors and remediating mold.

Environmental Issues

At Home Depot, it is vitally important to conserve the environment. The following are the principles help them guide in their actions and lead them down a path of sustainability. They pledge that they will :

* be committed to improving the environment by selling products that are manufactured, packaged and labeled in a responsible manner, that take the environment into consideration and that provide greater value to customers.

* support

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