Skip to main content


Solvay employees in Europe regularly support in many activities to support social causes (feeding the hungry, clothing and basic necessities for the needy, vehicle safety practices); protect the environment, and advocate for education (encouraging children, especially girls, to pursue careers in science and technology and promote careers in those fields).

Solvay sites in Germany create impact on sustainability AND people by donating used technical devices

AFB - people with disabilities refurbishing used IT and mobile devices

Solvay sites in Germany donate used PCs, notebooks, monitors and mobile devices to Arbeit für Menschen mit Behinderung (AfB), an inclusive non-profit organization dedicated to creating jobs for people with disabilities by refurbishing used IT and mobile devices. In doing so, our colleagues are helping to reduce CO2 emissions, save raw materials and contribute to a better life for people with disabilities, supporting sustainability across all three Solvay One Planet pillars.

Solvay has been collaborating with AfB, or Work for People with Disabilities, for 12 years. It is Europe’s largest non-profit IT company, creating jobs for people with disabilities by refurbishing, recycling and reselling used IT equipment collected from companies like Solvay. In 2021 alone, our cooperation with AfB in Germany saved 16 metric tons of CO2, ten metric tons of metals and minerals and around 64,000 kilowatt hours of energy, while also creating a job for one person with a disability. 

Small actions, big impact

Of the 200 notebooks, PCs and monitors donated by Solvay in 2021, more than 60% were re-sold, with the rest being recycled. "Resources are conserved and people with disabilities are given a career perspective. We are happy to support this concept," says Wolfgang Hackelbörger, Country HR Manager in Germany. 

Contributing to social participation and resource conservation

In the 12 years they have been working with AfB, our German sites have donated around 1,600 devices, of which more than 70% have been resold. This amounts to savings of around 70 metric tons of greenhouse gases, more than 90 metric tons of metals and minerals and almost 240,000 kilowatt hours of energy. 

At the beginning of 2022, AfB thanked Solvay for our many years of loyalty and our contribution to social participation and resource conservation. And according to Wolfgang it’s a partnership that will continue well into the future: "Reprocessing IT hardware and thus conserving resources is an approach that is 100% in line with our Solvay One Planet sustainability program – and one that we will continue to promote." 


Solvay’s site in Rheinberg mobilize in support of Ukrainian refugees

As the humanitarian crisis caused by the war on Ukraine worsens, Solvay’s Rheinberg site has been finding ways to help those in need. Supported by the Solvay Solidarity Fund, colleagues in Germany have been preparing housing for refugees in apartments at our Rheinberg plant. An inspiring example of Solvay’s ability to bond with local communities and provide hope and support in times of crisis.

Apartments and more for refugees in Rheinberg

Colleagues at Solvay’s Rheinberg plant have been working together to prepare housing for Ukrainian refugees. The facilities at the plant include eight unused apartments, which can accommodate up to 36 people.

"The willingness among colleagues to help and donate is enormous," says Rheinberg’s site Manager Norbert Mülders. “Employees have renovated and furnished the apartments on their own at short notice; the plant’s fire department painted the walls, for example.” 

The site has organized spontaneous collection campaigns, with many employees having donated or purchased furniture, clothing, household appliances or toys for use by the refugees. Others have taken refugees – mainly women and children – into their own homes temporarily or have offered their services as translators, while numerous colleagues act as mentors, helping refugees complete tasks such as registering with the authorities. The plant is also cooperating with the City of Rheinberg to find ways to take in more refugees, with the city’s mayor has already thanked Solvay for the much-needed support. 

The site’s efforts locally have been supported at the Group level. Money from the Solvay Solidarity Fund has enabled the site to mobilize quickly and, according to Mülders, serves as “additional motivation for the further commitment of our many volunteers.” 


The Bad Wimpfen site collaborates with schools to foster initiatives in the fields of science

It is a priority for Solvay in Bad Wimpfen to support young people and to enable them to start a career. The site has maintained sponsorships and co-operations with schools in the region for many years:

  • Hohenstaufen-Gymnasium, Bad Wimpfen, Collaboration since 2003
  • Otto-Klenert-Schule, Bad Friedrichshall, Education Partnership since 2013
  • Hermann-Greiner-Realschule, Neckarsulm, Education Partnership since 2015
  • Ludwig-Frohnhäuser-Schule, Bad Wimpfen

Solvay offers students internships, classroom visits, and plant tours, sponsors school and laboratory projects, and supports schools with learning materials and instruments for chemistry lessons. In addition, people from the site regularly present the company at trainee fairs and facilitate career information days in schools. The aim is to get young people excited about chemistry and introduce them to scientific and technical careers at an early age, support them in their choice of career and prepare them for vocational training. Solvay’s strategy for apprenticeship in Bad Wimpfen is according to demand, and the chances of being taken on are correspondingly high. 

Bad Wimpfen School Cooperation


With Rêv'Elles, we encourage young girls from modest backgrounds to think bigger


With our ambitious One Dignity program, we place diversity, equity and inclusion at the heart of Solvay's strategy. In December 2021, Solvay France signed a new partnership with Rêv'Elles.

Expand the field of possibilities

Rêv'Elles is an association that opens the horizons to young girls, aged between 14 and 20, who often censor themselves in their professional ambitions. The stated objective is to give these young girls access to information and above all to give them the desire to study and to help them to have confidence in themselves.

In 2020, our Aubervilliers site (Ile-de-France) collaborated with Rêv'Elles as part of our 'Citizen Day' day by co-building an inspiring webinar on women’s careers.

The strength of diversity

Building on this first success, Solvay France has engaged with Rêv'Elles in order to support young women in Ile-de-France and in Lyon (France) - where the association's branches are located - in the construction of their professional project.

Partnering to promote science and technology and the associated professions

CGenial Solvay France (1)

Solvay has been supporting the 'Teachers in companies' and 'Engineers and technicians in the classroom' actions, as well as the national CGénial science competition for several years now. The mission of the CGénial Foundation is to promote science and technology and the associated professions. It is also working to bring the worlds of business and education closer together to meet the challenges of today and tomorrow.

To understand the company and more precisely our businesses, Solvay also opens the doors of its sites to classes of secondary school students. Our employees also have the opportunity to share their passion for their professions by visiting secondary schools directly. 

These various activities are a great way of inspiring people to take up careers!

"Let me explain my job!"

Six Solvay employees recently opened a dialogue with students from the British School of Brussels in the hopes of inspiring them to begin thinking about their future studies and their careers.

The purpose of the virtual exchange was to help students, most around the age of 15,  make the link between their education and their professional career. 

The first part of the exchange was a “career talk” with the Solvay professionals sharing information about their educational and professional backgrounds and explaining what their day-to-day activities are like at work. Their objective was to broaden the students’ thinking and open their eyes to the many paths that await. 

The second part of the exchange was a one-hour interactive session in which the youngsters engaged in conversation about the knowledge and skills essential to working at Solvay. Students were also challenged to develop and practice their critical thinking skills. The Solvay volunteers also prepared and presented fictional and real-life scenarios detailing tasks or recurring challenges they face regularly in their work and asked the students to talk about how they would respond.

All participants involved said they found the exchange to be a fulfilling experience.


Remember to buckle up in that back seat


Knowing that seat belts are effective in saving lives is what inspired some Solvay employees to support a children's car safety initiative called "Seat belt in the back seat." 

Seat belts are said to reduce the risk of death by 45% and the risk of serious injury by 50%. Numbers don’t lie, seatbelts save lives.

"Teaching children safety and saving children's lives!" was the theme of a recent online campaign led by an army of 25 Solvay volunteers, reinforced by educational institutions, teachers, and amazing teamwork. The campaign made a positive impact on 3,300 children over a four-day period via numerous interactive online presentations and an overall emphasis on teamwork.

In addition to bringing smiles to children’s faces, the campaign also brought lots of positive energy to the Solvay team.

“Zuckertüte” or “Schultüte” for all!

Beautiful toddler standing playing with chocolate colored balls on the table at kindergarten

Team members from the Solvay-Bernburg site want to make sure that children have the opportunity to celebrate the ‘new beginning’ by experiencing this German tradition that can make their first day of school a little bit “sweeter”.

Starting school is a turning point in the life of a child and the entire family. This transition is associated with many changes for the little ones. A German tradition helps to ease the anxiously awaited first day of school: Parents or grandparents present their children or grandchildren with a large cone made of cardboard and filled with sweets and little presents. The practice is known as “Zuckertüte” in the Eastern part of Germany or “Schultüte” in the Western part of Germany. 

For some kids without parents or grandparents to carry on the tradition, there might not be a Zuckertüte if not for the generosity of volunteers from the Soda Ash and Derivatives plant in Bernburg. The site has a close societal connection to the “kids e.V.” association, an organization that takes care of children without parents or grandparents or parents who might be ill. 

Individual employees and teams from Solvay-Bernburg started August 2018 their own tradition - called “Become a cone sponsor”. They are filling festive cones and donating them to children in need. Through their efforts, which became even more challenging during the pandemic situation, cones were distributed to a total of 30 first-graders and 24 fifth-graders in the last 4 years. The cones were packed with school supplies, toys, and of course — sweets. The children express their gratitude with a cultural program, some homemade cakes and lovingly crafted cards.


"I am proud that we have built up this tradition and that we have no trouble finding sponsors for this project. Supervisors and children expressed to us how grateful they are for the experience. We’d like to offer a big thank you to everyone who contributed to making those children happy." Katharina Nessig, Human Resource Manager at Bernburg

HR Site Brussels team rolled up its sleeves

Human Resources (HR) team members from the Brussels site opted to roll up their sleeves and assist the NGO Solidarité Grands Froids in its mission to bring warm meals, clothes, and a listening ear to those in need, rather than take part in conventional team-building activity, like an escape room or a scavenger hunt or a wine-making workshop.

In explaining why they wanted to turn a potential afternoon of recreation into meaningful societal action, team members said they thought it was more important to reach out to the most fragile members of their community.  

Solidarité Grands Froids, based in the heart of Brussels, is a non-profit, non-governmental organization (NGO) that provides support to the homeless and less-fortunate inhabitants of the city by collecting and distributing donated items, such as clothing, toiletries, housewares, toys, shoes, etc. 

After arriving at the organization’s facility one afternoon, team members split into two groups to offer their assistance. Half of the team sorted through heaps of donated clothing that needed to be organized for later redistribution. The other half hit the kitchen to peel, chop and slice vegetables so volunteers could distribute warm meals at the end of the day. On the menu? Vegetable minestrone, potatoes, poultry sausage and applesauce, topped off with a delicious sauce specially prepared by Solidarité Grands Froids' volunteer chef. 

With the HR site team’s help that day, the NGO was able to feed 50 people on the streets that night. 

"With all my heart, THANK YOU! It's always a pleasure to see you all again and to work together toward helping the most vulnerable people in our community." Cynthia Simpson, founder of Solidarité Grands Froids