Ask any group of New Orleanians what they know about Shell and they’ll immediately tell you two things; Shell sells fuel…..and Shell saved Jazz Fest. Well, both are true…but there’s much more to both stories.
Shell’s presence in Louisiana is much larger than just the ever visible Pecten logo signaling refueling opportunities, and Shell did much more than just provide the sponsorship to ensure the survival of one of the city’s signature cultural celebrations after Hurricane Katrina. We’ve had a long business presence in New Orleans and Louisiana that has enabled Shell to make positive economic and community contributions for years.
THE REST OF THE STORY
In 1929, Shell acquired the Norco refinery, beginning its downstream presence in Louisiana but we didn’t stop there. Today, with almost every aspect of Shell’s business represented in Louisiana – including Deepwater exploration and production, pipeline, refining and manufacturing, and a retail network – we are proud to call Louisiana home.
But more than just being an operator, producer, refiner and distributor of petroleum and petroleum related products, Shell is made up of people who want to make a difference in their communities. Often that manifests itself through volunteerism of our employees and/or cash contributions to local non-profit organizations through our Social Investment program.
We build collaborative relationships, working with local, regional and national partners who share our interest to enhance education, environment and community resilience in the Gulf Coast region.
From our Deepwater organization, we contribute approximately $5 Million annually to local communities and organizations. They include the United Way of Southeast Louisiana, Louisiana Association of Non-profit Organizations (LANO), Safe Kids Coalition, Café Reconcile etc…and of course, Jazz Fest.
In addition to these investments in our local community, Shell provides approximately $1.5 million annually to specific coastal restoration projects and organizations like The Nature Conservancy, Gulf of Mexico Foundation, Americas Wetlands Foundation/Americas Energy Coast (AEC), National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, Ducks Unlimited, US Council for Sustainable Development.
In March of this year Motiva employees helped tornado victims living just a few miles down the road from the Convent Refinery. A team of Motiva employees helped residents clean up their property; removing fallen tree limbs and other debris. Motiva also made a donation to the Capital Area United Way which was solely dedicated to tornado clean-up and repairs in St. James Parish.
In Ascension Parish Motiva employees helped build a new playground in Donaldsonville in an area where residents needed a safe area for the children to play. LSU engineers designed the playground and Ascension Chamber of Commerce, Leadership Ascension lead the program, raised money and recruited volunteers.
Motiva’s Convent Refinery has been involved with the Capital Area United Way for many years. Just in the last four years Convent’s employee campaign contributions have more than doubled, going from $199,720 in 2013 to $517,188 in 2015.
In February, the Salvation Army of Greater Baton Rouge named Shell Geismar its 2015 “Company of the Year.” The site is very active each year in the organization’s “Angel Tree” project (which helps ensure that children of incarcerated parents enjoy a merry Christmas).
This past Christmas, Shell Geismar employees upped the ante by building and custom-decorating fifteen playhouses, which were delivered to smiling boys and girls in Ascension and East Baton Rouge Parishes.
Shell Geismar employees serve lunch to volunteers sprucing up the Baranco Clark YMCA branch in Baton Rouge and rebuild a ramp to an outdoor stage. The activities were part of the annual Martin Luther King, Jr., “Day of Caring” event in Baton Rouge.
The strength of the Norco Manufacturing Complex’s annual United Way campaign illustrates the site’s commitment to being good neighbors. It’s not just about contributing financial support, it’s about lending a hand as volunteers in area schools, building playgrounds or wheelchair ramps, or helping in the aftermath of a flood or hurricane. Through employee contributions, special events and company matches the 2015 campaign generated $781,908.
In an innovative pledge to its community, Norco contributed funds to the establishment of the Norco Community Fund (NCF) and the Norco Community Economic Development Foundation (NCEDF), specifically serving the residents and businesses in the town of Norco. Developed in 2001, with a one million dollar endowment, NCF awards grants to non-profit agencies and organizations in the Norco area.
Founded in 2003, with a five million dollar endowment, NCEDF provides grants to recognized organizations, which encourage job retention and economic development directly impacting Norco. The NCF and NCEDF are donor-advised funds through the Greater New Orleans Foundation.
Committees comprised of local residents and business leaders annually review grant applications and make recommendations for funding. These recommendations are nearing $3 Million dollars in investment into diverse programs and organizations benefitting the Norco community.
While our sponsorship of the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival may be the most visible, it is certainly not the only impactful example of our commitment to our communities. Shell is deeply invested in the communities where we operate. Our employees live here, work here and volunteer here - making us a vital part of a resilient and vibrant New Orleans and Louisiana community.