In 2015, Discovery Communications received the Nonprofit Village’s Corporation Making a Difference award, recognizing its invaluable social contributions in Montgomery County and beyond. Discovery Communications is a mass media company established in 1985. The company has a broad reach that extends to over 3 billion subscribers around the globe.
Through its extensive Impact initiatives, Discovery Communications offers a wide-range of programs that drive positive change locally and globally. Five key programs spearhead Discovery’s mission to have an impact on the local community, the world, its employees and the industry:
Employees Giving Back
Discovery Impact’s corporate citizenship initiatives encourage employees to take the helm in leading and inspiring the change they want to see. Since 2010, Discover Your Impact Day provides an opportunity for employees and their families to volunteer with local organizations. The 2017 Impact Day took place on June 16th, with over 4,000 employees from 60 offices and in 37 countries participating. Other employee programs include “Say Yes to the Prom” and “Creating Change.” The latter is a pro bono initiative that has employees donating hours of work of design, marketing, communications and operational work to champion the efforts of select local nonprofit organizations.
As a global company, Discovery has taken advantage of the opportunity to partner with a range of nonprofit, governmental and educational organizations around the world, offering direct contributions and in-kind donations. Discovery partners with organizations like My Brother’s Keeper, the World Wildlife Fund and the national STEM initiative, “Connect the Dots”. Their employee involvement, organizational advice, and other internal resources are a key factor in sustaining charities and community organizations. It is also a best practice that many corporations can replicate.
Diversity and Inclusion
Discovery Impact also promotes diversity and inclusion both within and outside the company. Internally, there is a wide-range of employee resource groups to foster diversity and representation: Asian Cultural Alliance, Black Cultural Alliance, Discovery Veterans Group, Generation Discovery, Women’s Leadership Network, Discovery Family Forum, ableD, and unidaD. Externally, Discovery and its employees support and contribute to organizations that promote diversity and inclusion in the industry itself. As a major employer in the locations where Discovery operates, they use these inclusion tools to create a stronger sense of community within the organization and as a member of the larger community in which they live and work.
Discovery demonstrates its commitment to the planet through various company initiatives that foster sustainable practices within and beyond the company, whether it is through a rooftop garden initiative or empowering employees to make the company greener as ambassadors. In 2008, its headquarters became LEED certified as a recognition of the company’s efforts to reduce its carbon footprint. For Discovery, sustainability is central – not just for the planet, but for the communities that inhabit it.
Discovery Communications launched the nonprofit charitable organization Discovery Learning Alliance in 1997 to enhance educational opportunities globally through school- based interventions that utilize the power of the media. Another program, Discovery Learning enhances educational experiences across institutions and countries with digital textbooks, multimedia content, and professional development.
This brief overview of just a select number of impact initiatives highlights the breadth of Discovery Communication’s reach and impact on communities everywhere. In Montgomery County, Discovery has demonstrated the importance it places on collaboration through its partnerships and work with the chamber of commerce and local organizations, as well as the internships it offers to local high school and college students.