Last year, WAAK decided to participate in the SDG Champion trajectory. This is a sustainability label issued by the United Nations (UN). In order to obtain it, as a company, you must meet a number of so-called sustainable development goals (or SDGs). These goals are in turn linked to a number of targets that you have to achieve. Voka, the Flemish employers’ organisation guides companies that participate in this process. After an in-depth screening, it turned out that WAAK meets the requirements. This is why we are now rewarded with the Voka Charter for Sustainable Entrepreneurship (or VCDO - Voka Charter Duurzaam Ondernemen, as it is called in Dutch). This is the first major step to obtain the SDG Champion label.
As a social enterprise, WAAK is mainly associated with social entrepreneurship. This is correct, but at WAAK we go a step further. We strongly believe that sustainability and circularity are our society’s and economy’s future. These aspects play a central role in our business strategy. It determines our daily actions and it offers us a framework for the activities that we want to undertake. For example: we will always create extra space for projects that meet with this framework. The other way around, we will refuse assignments that are not sustainable or circular. This approach has now been awarded with the Voka Charter for Sustainable Entrepreneurship (or VCDO – Voka Charter Duurzaam Ondernemen, as it is called in Dutch)
The first big step to become SDG Champion
This charter can only be issued to companies that participate in the SDG Champion trajectory of the United Nations (UN). ‘SDG Champion’ is a hallmark that is given to companies that are committed to sustainability. Of course, this is not without obligations: companies that participate must meet with a number of sustainability targets (SDGs or Sustainable Development Goals). These, in turn, are linked to certain targets. Flemish employers’ organisation Voka guides the participating companies in achieving these. Companies that succeed are awarded with the VCDO Award. This is the first major step to become SDG Champion.
In depth screening of WAAK's business activities
In this context, Voka did a thorough screening of our business activities. Our refurbishing of OBUs (On Board Units or toll booths), our use of Ocean Plastics (that are converted into Green Plastics) to make our cleaning tools, the recovery of rubber bands and plastic bags, the collection and reuse of rain water, the installation of 3883 solar panels, and the reuse of moulding residues, received great acclaim.
A nice reward
Having the honor to receive the Voka Charter for Sustainable Entrepreneurship is a nice reward and a confirmation of what our employees realise every day. We are therefore extremely proud of that. In October we will have to take the next hurdle. Then we will find out if we will become SDG Champion.
* In the past, WAAK has been awarded the Voka Charter for Sustainable Entrepreneurship 18 times. Each time, we were candidate to become ‘SDG Pioneer’. Now, for the first time, we want to become ‘SDG Champion’.